Twentynine Palms, CA-based sludge/doom metal group Atala recently announced the upcoming release of the full-length concept album "Labyrinth of Ashmedai," which drops on January 26, 2018 via Salt of the Earth Records.
The concept of "Labyrinth of Ashmedai" is inspired by Asmodeus, or "Ashmedai", the biblical "king of demons." Conjuring grit-laced sludge inspired by the barren and often oppressive desert backdrop, Atala grips the listener with reflective, crushing doom atmospheres dripping with stoner rock and experimental influences to boot. Pre-orders for Labyrinth of Ashmedai are available now at this location.
Atala has just released a brand new song entitled "Death's Dark Tomb" - a track directly tied into the album's demonic concept. The slow and low, sauntering crusher can be heard exclusively via Loudwire at this location, or just in the player above.
Guitarist/frontman Kyle Stratton commented on the song: "'Death's Dark Tomb' is one of the last tracks we put together for the album. While writing it, I was really trying bring the concept of the album together. While studying this demon Ashmedai that I was basing the concept on, I had read a fable of the "Pact Primeval". In this story it is said he deceived all the angels in heaven and God himself into forming Hell. He was supposed to rehabilitate souls. Instead, he tortured them and enslaved them forming the 72 legions of Hell. This song was written from the perspective of the trapped souls.
"Musically, this song includes my favorite guitar solo on the album, a really cool tribal drum part and a rad noise guitar feedback ending our producer, Billy Anderson, came up with. Definitely one of the most fun tracks to perform live."
As with the last record, "Shaman's Path of the Serpent," "Labyrinth of Ashmedai" was produced by fellow Twentynine Palms native Billy Anderson, recognized for his work with colossal bands such as Sleep, Melvins and Mastodon. The band says working with Anderson gives them a great advantage, because not only does he bring out their best, he understands the background on a personal level.
Musically, Atala draws inspiration from the local environment, but not in the way other bands from the area do. Twentynine Palms is very different from its neighboring national park, Joshua Tree. Instead, the members of Atala feel more sullen in the outlook - inspired by true struggles they see the effects of often - like war, poverty, death, drugs, gang violence, prostitution and murder.
The track listing and album artwork for the alum can be found here:
1. Grains of Sand
2. Tabernacle Of
3. Death's Dark Tomb
4. I Am Legion
5. Wilted Leaf