Sleepwalkers – Hollowpath

Sleepwalkers, established in 2010 by Mike Watts to create slow, melodic death/doom metal that evoke visions of shifting dreams and bleak nightmares within a heavy framework of dark overtones and deeply tortured screams, roared emotionally by Caleb Bergen and rumbling bass lines provided by Daniel Luces to accompany the thick, layered guitars laid down by Watts.

On October 14th, 2016, Sleepwalkers released their somber, crushingly heavy album, Hollowpath, via Transcending Records and dark, severe, marvelous, and heavy as fuck are just a few ways to describe this delicious morsel of doom metal. While the EP is more sludgy metal style, the blend of pacing and throat slashing guitar riffs will have even the speed freaks throwing up their horns.

These Texas boys do right by melodic doom metal by creating a complete audio atmosphere of sobering steady ferocity and darkness, while maintaining a very solid sense of time. Their attention to the details is evident in their ‘against the doom metal norm’ of ending a track when the track is over, not keeping a track going just because doom metal tracks are supposed to be 13 minutes long.

The second track on Hollowpath, “Sliver of Salvation”, is particularly badass with its explosive opening but, truthfully, the entire EP is solid. From start to finish it never provides an opening for a listener to get bored. The breadth of disconsolate brilliance exhibited on Hollowpath saves it from suffering from the dreaded ‘EP Syndrome’; too short and fans lose interest because it will a while before the band puts out anything new, that is if they don’t break up before then. While the anticipation of a full length album is there, the order of the tracks, the pacing of each track and depth/quality of each song on Hollowpath will keep fans interested and will keep them satisfied for quite some time.

A solid, enjoyable (in the most depressing and dark way possible) listen from start to finish for anyone that likes their music as dark and intense as a soul crushing abyss. Hollowpath is everything Sleepwalkers strive to be “the embodiment of despair, grief, and loss in musical form and showcases new forms of desolate melancholy with which to bring thoughts of overwhelming hopelessness to the listener”.

Album Lineup:
Mike Watts – Guitars,Drums
Caleb Bergen – Vocals
Daniel Luces – Bass

Tracklist:
1 Hollowpath (7:04)
2 Sliver of Salvation (6:20)
3 The Burning Oracle (6:34)
4 Netherworld (7:07)

A video for the track “Hollowpath” can be seen here: https://youtu.be/blgsiS7vftM

Written By: Ken Bowden for Bloodrock Media on January 2, 2017