All the way from Eastern Connecticut, Crawl Below is a one person post-black metal/folk/punk project fronted by Charlie Sad Eyes who does all the lyrics, instrumentals, artwork and many more. For a person like him in creating such a metallic, crusty, punky and HP Lovecraftian style of extreme music, Charlie’s passion and deliverance in making of this record not only is absolutely beautiful and surrealistic, but his artistic nature and vision in wanting to create the most abyssal, claustrophobic and atmospheric soundscapes of extreme metal surely needs all the recognition possible because this is serious top notch grade A material of music.
Musically, this is a rather experimental approach on creating many hybrids of music weather it be the blackened death metal passages of the song Yet Foul From Their Eyes, or the doom metal inspired And Deep In The Worm and the amazing instrumental leads of the post-metal soundscapes of Will Rot The Base Chains, Charlie’s vocal delivery consists of having this melancholic, emotional, thought-provoking and a New England attitude he’s known for, the craftsmanship, detail and melodicism on the album definitely captures such wonderful things and passages as it feels you’re trapped under the abyss and there’s no way of telling how to get out. The drums also play a nice counterpart from the mid-paced and slower, almost punk rock style arrangements makes it interesting since this record is basically Charlie wanting to dive deeper into making such exquisite taste of musical genres and the way he was able to absorb such energetic presences makes me more appreciated to know what he is portraying on the record.
The guitars and bass are very well mixed in the production where it feels audible but sometimes the chord progression can be often times be a tad bit repetitive for my taste but the progressiveness and maturity upon the second half of this record demonstrates the listener that if HP Lovecraft was still alive and got to hear lyricism based off his novelties and cosmic horror lore, he would be damned proud of Charlie if he was able to hear a dynamic embodiment of Charlie’s latest creation. Perhaps one of the biggest highlights on the record in my personal opinion is the musicality and technical proficiencys as I feel majority of the tracks give it this nightmarish, witchy and ghoulish atmosphere where I often times feel like I’m listening to Agalloch where the music captures the emotion and characters in giving every sense of such brilliancy and it makes me feel attached to know that I see greater things for Charlie years to come. Its Ministers On Earth is a lovechild to any fans of HP Lovecraft, doom metal, blackened death, folk and post-metal if you want a record showcasing diversity and experimentation at its finest.
Overall Score: 9.0/10
Review by Jake Butler