CONFESSOR
Doom Metal • United States

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Confessor is an American doom metal, thrash metal band formed in 1986 by wailing vocalist Scott Jeffreys, guitarists Brian Shoaf and Ivan Colon, bassist Cary Rowells, and drummer Stephen Shelton. After releasing 3 demos, Confessor released a debut album called Condemned in 91 and an eponymous EP, but lack of interest in their talents soon drove them to break up. They re-formed a decade later under tragic circumstances to play a benefit for the recently deceased Colon, then while they were together decided to record a 2004 EP entitled Blueprint Soul. New album Unraveled was released in 2005.

Confessor made its mark on the underground metal scene in the late 80's by combining some of the genre's essential elements in a way that no band had attempted yet, and that few, if any have successfully blended since. Once dubbed the world's most obstinately technical, Confessor never failed to bewilder their fans
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Condemned (Reissue)Condemned (Reissue)
EARACHE RECORDS 2015
Audio CD$8.98
$12.05 (used)
Sour TimesSour Times
Limited Edition
Season of Mist 2006
Audio CD$4.99
$1.09 (used)
UNRAVELEDUNRAVELED
Season of Mist 2012
Audio CD$2.68
$1.00 (used)
UncontrolledUncontrolled
Divebomb 2012
Audio CD$11.97
$11.96 (used)
LIVE IN NORWAYLIVE IN NORWAY
Multiple Formats
Season of Mist 2012
DVD$6.17
$4.99 (used)
ConfessorConfessor
Relativity 1992
Audio CD$75.00
$19.00 (used)
Condemned by EARACHE RECORDSCondemned by EARACHE RECORDS
EARACHE RECORDS
Audio CD$29.51
$8.00 (used)
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CONFESSOR Discography

CONFESSOR albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.69 | 5 ratings
Condemned
Doom Metal 1991
.. Album Cover 3.25 | 2 ratings
Unraveled
Doom Metal 2005

CONFESSOR EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Rock Hard Presents: Gods Of Grind
Doom Metal 1991
.. Album Cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Gods Of Grind
Doom Metal 1992
.. Album Cover 3.00 | 2 ratings
Confessor
Doom Metal 1992
.. Album Cover 2.75 | 2 ratings
Sour Times EP
Doom Metal 2005

CONFESSOR live albums

CONFESSOR demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

.. Album Cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
The Secret
Doom Metal 1987
.. Album Cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Uncontrolled
Doom Metal 1989
.. Album Cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Collapse
Doom Metal 1990
.. Album Cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Blueprint Soul
Doom Metal 2004

CONFESSOR boxset & compilations

.. Album Cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Uncontrolled
Doom Metal 2012

CONFESSOR singles (0)

CONFESSOR movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Live In Norway
Doom Metal 2006

CONFESSOR Reviews

CONFESSOR Unraveled

Album · 2005 · Doom Metal
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UMUR
"Unraveled" is the 2nd full-length studio album by technical doom/thrash metal act Confessor. The album was released through Season of Mist in October 2005. Southern Lord Records re-released "Unraveled" in a vinyl version in 2007. Confessor was quite the unique force on the doom metal scene of the late 80s and early 90s and their debut full-length studio album "Condemned (1991)" is widely considered a cult "classic" in the genre. The band unfortunately split-up in 1994 while in the process of recording their second album. Confessor reformed in 2002 and released a couple of EPs before releasing "Unraveled" which is their album comeback. The album is dedicated to the memory of former Confessor guitarist Ivan Colon who passed away in February 2002 due to cardiac complications. New guitarist is Shawn McCoy. The rest of the 90s lineup is intact.

Even after 14 years the music on the album is still unmistakably the sound of Confessor. Compared to "Condemned (1991)" the music on "Unraveled" is not quite as technical although tracks like "Until Tomorrow" and "Hibernation" beg to differ. Scott Jeffreys unique high pitched (love him or hate him) vocal style is a bit more subtle on "Unraveled" and his use of dark harmonies reminds me a bit of the vocal style also used by an artist like Alice in Chains. Especially the title track which has a definite Alice in Chains vibe to it. The basis in the music is still doom metal with technical thrash metal elements though. The 9 tracks on the album are all of good quality but some tracks are not as memorable as others. Just as the case was on "Condemned", Unraveled is an album that takes time to get into though and repeated listens is recommendable and rewarding. Highlights on the album include tracks like "Cross the Bar", "Until Tomorrow", "Sour Times", and "Hibernation".

The sound production is heavy and powerful. Much warmer and more meaty than the sound on "Condemned (1991)". "Unraveled" is ultimately a good comeback album by Confessor but to my ears it doesn´t exactly reach the heights of it´s predecessor. The fact that 3 of the 9 tracks ("Sour Times", "Hibernation", and "Blueprint Soul") already appeared on the two preceeding EP releases "Blueprint Soul (2004)" and "Sour Times (2004)" (albeit in slightly different versions) isn´t a plus in my book either. A 3.5 - 4 star (75%) rating is still deserved though.

CONFESSOR Sour Times EP

EP · 2005 · Doom Metal
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UMUR
"Sour Times" is an EP release by US technical doom/thrash metal act Confessor. The 15:48 minutes long EP was released through Season of Mist in September 2005. The EP is limited to 1000 CD copies. Confessor was originally active in the period 1986 - 1994, but they reunited in 2002, and "Sour Times" is their second release since the reunion.

The music style on the EP is the unique and unmistakable technical doom/thrash metal sound of Confessor. The music is crushingly heavy, yet technically relatively complex, featuring some high pitched vocals in front. Scott Jeffreys vocal performance is a bit more subtle here though than his vocals on "Condemned (1991)". Describing Confessor´s music style on "Sour Times" is a bit difficult, but imagine if early Trouble was combined with the most technical releases by Fates Warning and on top you added some Alice in Chains type harmony vocals and a generally dark atmosphere.

There are 4 audio tracks and one video track on the EP. The opening two tracks "Sour Times" and "Hibernation" are taken off the 2004 "Blueprint Soul" EP which in my world makes both of them rather dispensable if you already own that EP. The fact that both are also featured on the band´s 2nd full-length studio album "Unraveled (2005)", albeit in other versions, doesn´t exactly make their presence here more valuable. They are however excellent tracks both of them, so nothing wrong with the quality. The third track on the EP is a remastered version of "Condemned" from the 1990 demo by Confessor. A great version but if you already have the debut album you already got that song too. So it´s kind of a curiosity more than a highly valuable EP track. The last audio track on the EP is a radio edit version of "Sour Times", which to my ears is totally dispensable. Radio edits are a waste of time if you ask me. The live video of the Trouble cover track "The Last Judgement" is pretty great and actually provides some sort of reason to purchase this EP.

The material on "Sour Times" is of high quality and except for the radio edit version of "Sour Times", I would normally rate the other tracks with 4 star (80%) ratings. All tracks have been released before though and that radio edit track really doesn´t make me happy either so a 3 - 3.5 (65%) star rating is in order.

CONFESSOR Confessor

EP · 1992 · Doom Metal
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UMUR
"Confessor" is an EP release by US technical doom/thrash metal act Confessor. The EP was released through Earache Records in 1992. The band released their debut full-length studio album "Condemned" in October 1991 and then participated in the "Gods of Grind" tour with fellow Earache Records label mates Entombed, Cathedral, and Carcass. A very succesful tour which also spawned the "Gods of Grind" split album in 1992. The "Confessor" EP was probably released to continue riding the wave of succes that the band was on at the time.

The music style on the EP is Confessor´s unique technical doom/trash metal style with Scott Jeffreys characteristic high pitched vocals in front. There are 4 tracks on the 19:19 minutes long EP. The first track "Condemned" is taken directly off the debut album. So if you already have that album there´s nothing new about that one. Great technical doom/thrash metal track, but nothing new. "Last Judgement" is a Trouble track taken from that band´s 1983 demo while the instrumental "Endtime", which is another Trouble cover, is taken from Trouble´s debut full-length studio album "Psalm 9 (1984)". Both covers are given the Confessor tech doom/thrash metal treatment and are the highlights of the EP. Great material. The last track on the EP is a demo version of "Collapse Into Despair" which in it´s studio version is featured on the debut album. It´s decent but I prefer the album version.

The material on "Confessor" is generally of high quality but the inclusion of two tracks from "Condemned" (albeit one of them in a demo version that varies a little from the original) does drag my rating down (the fact that all tracks except the demo track also appear on the "Gods of Grind (1992)" split album, doesn´t exactly raise my rating either). I would have prefered at least three new tracks. Then I could have lived with one track from "Condemned". So a 4 star (80%) rating drops to a 3.5 (70%) star rating. It´s still a great release though.

CONFESSOR Condemned

Album · 1991 · Doom Metal
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UMUR
"Condemned" is the debut full-length studio album by US technical doom/thrash metal act Confessor. The album was released through Earache Records in October 1991. The original album features 9 tracks but there´s a Japanese version available with 3 additional bonus tracks. Confessor was formed in 1986 and released three demos in the period 1987-1990 before being signed by Earache Records and releasing "Condemned".

The music on the album is a very unusual kind of doom metal. First of all the pace isn´t snail tempo slow. It´s still brick heavy music but the tempo is mostly kept in slow- to mid pace. Secondly the music is quite technical compared to most other releases in the genre. Especially the drumming stands out as very busy and skillfully played, but the rest of the music is also rather intricate. Calling the music on "Condemned" progressive or technical doom metal wouldn´t be far off the mark. To top it all off there´s the distinct high pitched vocal delivery by Scott Jeffreys. He is the kind of singer that I usually associate with progressive rock/metal. I´m reminded a bit of Cedric Bixler-Zavala from The Mars Volta. While Scott Jeffreys is a skilled vocalist, his vocal lines are to my ears rather non-melodic and sometimes even close to atonal, and it will probably be a challenge to some, if they can digest them. If a bit more melody and variation had been put into the vocals, this album could have been even greater than it already is. The melodies do grow on you though, but most likely the album will require several spins before the tracks stand out from each other and the melodies unfold.

Another unusual feature on a doom metal album is that the tracks are not especially long. Most are about 4 minutes long but to my ears that´s only a good thing. There´s not a dull moment throughout the album´s playing time. Confessor is not the kind of band that play their riffs on repeat for several minutes. On the other hand some might miss gloomy atmosphere and slow building majestic doomy climaxes. The music on Condemned has a more desperate sound to it instead. Many of the riffs on the album are thrash metal inspired but the drums make sure the pace is kept slow enough for this to be called a doom metal album. Most tracks are very technical and there´s no better example than the excellent title track. It´s really refreshing to hear a doom metal album where the influence from Black Sabbath isn´t particularly obvious. Instead the early albums by Trouble seem to have been a great influence on Confessor.

The sound production lacks a bit of warmth if you ask me, but it´s still powerful, detailed, and professional, and it generally suits the music well. Upon conclusion "Condemned" is one of the most unique sounding doom metal albums out there. Not only because the music on the album is unusually technical for the genre but also because of the distinct high pitched vocal delivery by Scott Jeffreys. If you want to challenge yourself to some technical/progressive doom metal, "Condemned" is a great place to start. A 4.5 star (90%) rating is fully deserved. Just beware that Confessor is pretty surely an aquired taste.

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