TEL – Lowlife

TEL come with “Lowlife” and a different proposal to Doom Metal which is to make use of more melody and catchy tunes. TEL use lots of elements to make “Lowlife” a more palatable album to all ears, but it doesn’t mean that they renounce to the expected anger, fear, and hatred. They just add new elements as in “Submerged” that from the middle of it shows passages very near to the instrumentals that were common in the 1960s with a very aggressive and efficient guitar riffing. But “Lowlife” also has some surprises as in “Red Level” with its monolithical riffing and harsh vocals making an unexpected plot twist in the album. Here also goes a highlight to the drummer that does his best to fill all the blanks in the songs making them very near to slow blast beats. Well, in fact, they work pretty much as blast beats as we can hear in “Red Level.”

“Lowlife” is a very different album from their Doom peers not because it’s not as monolithical as many, but also because it offers melodic passages that pleases a lot. I’d loke to hail again the instruments passages as in “Red Level” which reminds a lot what Led Zeppelin used to do in the 1960s, but with more punch and anger. I have to say that TEL surprised with this attitude. The contrast they create with melodic guitar structures and harsh vocals is a killer. Pay attention to the beautiful vocal duet there is in “Choke.” That’s really what I’m talking about when I say about working with contrasts. The beautiful guitar lick that follows vocals is also a highlight. So simple, and yet, so effective.

Of course, there is a sabbatish feeling that interweaves all songs. It’s a very difficult feature to Doom Metal bands to leave behind. Though TEL use and abuse of them, the outcome is outstanding proving that Black Sabbath is still one of the most influential bands in Heavy Metal. Moreover, their inspirational fountain is never dry, I have no doubt about it. TEL prove it so and go beyond making a stand that they essential giving the contrast between the melodic and the harsh and that they can walk together to produce neat pieces of Heavy Metal. “Lowlife” is an album to make all suspicious minds go away from saying that Doom is boring and repetitive. TEL go very far from being repetitive.

TEL “Lowlife” was released on March 26th via Aural Music.

Track Listing:

  1. Oroboros
  2. Submerged
  3. Red Level
  4. Choke
  5. Strangers

Watch “Oroboros” official video here: