Album · 2017 · Doom Metal
Formed in 2014 after English guitarist Jamie McCathie relocated to the US, leaving his previous band, the sludge metal act Gurt behind, he met vocalist/bassist Susie McMullan and the two soon began making music, joined by drummer Jordan Perkins-Lewis. The band's only prior release is the EP Donkey (2015), making Rooster (2017) the trio's debut studio album.
There's a certain familiarity to Brume's music as soon as the opening track Grit and Pearls kicks into gear which is likely due to the prominence of other female fronted doom metal groups such as Avatarium, Jex Thoth and Blood Ceremony in recent years, but Brume distance themselves from these bands somewhat by lacking any overt psychedelic element. Instead they rely on down to earth, non-flashy doom metal riffs from Jamie McCathie's guitar and Susie McMullan's subtly brilliant and haunting vocal style. Their riffs are slow and pondering, slightly fuzzy and definitely designed to be crushing. The production doesn't make the album sound as massively heavy as some doom metal can be, but it works out just right for McMullan's soft and melodic voice, with Rooster ultimately coming across as a subdued and sombre album.
Rooster has a charm that proves to be infectious though. With the exception of the non-metal Welter the band write fairly long tracks but there's never an issue where a composition outstays its welcome. In fact Brume certainly display a knack for the longer track. Welter, not even reaching three minutes, is an interesting change a pace though. For me its Grit and Pearls, Reckon, and the closing Tradewind that stand out the most, but the fifty minute release is satisfying from start to finish. While I can't say that the album does too much to stand out within the doom metal genre as a whole, if you enjoy the style with a female voice then Rooster is a very nice release to add to your collection.