Sludge Metal

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Sludge metal generally combines the slow tempos, heavy rhythms and dark, pessimistic atmosphere of doom metal with the aggression, shouted vocals and occasional fast tempos of hardcore punk.

Post Sludge / Atmospheric Sludge metal This metal movement takes influences from post-rock as well as from sludge metal. While it is in many ways similar to post-rock, post-sludge metal tends to include lower-tuned guitars, darker themes and tones, and heavier drums. Post-sludge stresses emotion, contrasting the ambiance of post-rock with the weight and bombast of metal. Vocals are deemphasized or non-existent, and lyrics tend to be equally abstract: often thematic or philosophical in nature. It was originally a largely American phenomenon, but also included in its development some Japanese bands. Bands like Neurosis, Isis, Cult of Luna, and Pelican write lengthy songs (typically five or six per album) that can range from light and guitar-driven to extremely heavy, drum and bass-driven.

Atmospheric Sludge Metal

Post-metal as with atmospheric sludge is a genre that uses metal music to create a sound that draws heavily on atmospheres and textures.

This approach was used by many sludge metal bands including ISIS, Neurosis and Pelican, combining post-rock techniques with sludge metal. Bands in other genres including black metal and doom also combined those styles with atmospheric elements to create metal best described as atmospheric black metal or atmospheric doom metal (or atmospheric folk metal etc). Those bands are listed in MMA under atmospheric sludge metal, atmospheric black metal, doom metal or whatever core style best describes them.

A number of bands originally rooted in those styles moved away from their original sludge (or other) metal roots, increasingly focusing on the post-metal elements of their sound. Others were never based on those styles of metal and took their influences directly from post-rock, adding metal elements to create a more abrasive and expansive sound. These bands are listed as post-metal.

Post-metal is captured as a child-sub of sludge metal on MMA to reflect the stylistic origins of many post-metal bands in atmospheric sludge metal, albeit those origins have largely been left behind.

Sub-genre collaborators:
  • Bosh66 (leader)

sludge metal top albums

Showing only albums and EPs | Based on members ratings & MMA custom algorithm | 24 hours caching

CULT OF LUNA A Dawn To Fear Album Cover A Dawn To Fear
CULT OF LUNA
4.74 | 10 ratings
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CULT OF LUNA Mariner (with Julie Christmas) Album Cover Mariner (with Julie Christmas)
CULT OF LUNA
4.79 | 8 ratings
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NEUROSIS Souls at Zero Album Cover Souls at Zero
NEUROSIS
4.48 | 22 ratings
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CROWBAR Sonic Excess In Its Purest Form Album Cover Sonic Excess In Its Purest Form
CROWBAR
4.62 | 9 ratings
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CROWBAR Broken Glass Album Cover Broken Glass
CROWBAR
4.52 | 13 ratings
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NEUROSIS Times Of Grace Album Cover Times Of Grace
NEUROSIS
4.39 | 36 ratings
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ISIS Panopticon Album Cover Panopticon
ISIS
4.34 | 63 ratings
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CROWBAR Odd Fellows Rest Album Cover Odd Fellows Rest
CROWBAR
4.47 | 12 ratings
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NEUROSIS Through Silver In Blood Album Cover Through Silver In Blood
NEUROSIS
4.32 | 54 ratings
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MASTODON Crack The Skye Album Cover Crack The Skye
MASTODON
4.29 | 105 ratings
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JULIE CHRISTMAS Mariner (with Cult Of Luna) Album Cover Mariner (with Cult Of Luna)
JULIE CHRISTMAS
4.69 | 4 ratings
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INTRONAUT Prehistoricisms Album Cover Prehistoricisms
INTRONAUT
4.33 | 17 ratings
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This list is in progress since the site is new. We invite all logged in members to use the "quick rating" widget (stars bellow album covers) or post full reviews to increase the weight of your rating in the global average value (see FAQ for more details). Enjoy MMA!

sludge metal online videos

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THE DEIST
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Saint Sludge
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THE REVEREND IV
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Dragging Time
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O SLUGGARD
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Unholy Blackened Sludge
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DEAD ELEPHANT
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A Liminal Release
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THE BASTARDS DIESEL
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Starvation Protocol
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Phantom Centre
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KOLLAPSE
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The Scab Of Days
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CROSTA
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Mirabile Dictu
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STEATORRHEA
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Odium
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WOTHROSCH
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sludge metal Music Reviews

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY Blind

Album · 1991 · Sludge Metal
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UMUR
"Blind" is the 3rd full-length studio album by US hardcore/heavy metal act Corrosion of Conformity. The album was released through Relativity Records in November 1991. It´s the successor to "Animosity" from 1985, although the two albums are bridged by the "Technocracy" EP from 1987. "Animosity (1985)" featured the original trio lineup of Mike Dean (bass, lead vocals), Woody Weatherman (guitar), and Reed Mullin (drums, additional vocals). On "Technocracy (1987)" lead vocalist Simon Bob was added to the lineup, but he is not featured on "Blind" where he is replaced by Karl Agell. In addition to a new lead vocalist, second guitarist Pepper Keenan has also been added to the lineup. Bassist Mike Dean temporarily left Corrosion of Conformity in the years 1987-1993 and is replaced here by Phil Swisher.

Stylistically the music has also developed quite a lot since "Technocracy (1987)" and the other early releases by the band, which featured a hardcore/crossover thrash metal sound. "Blind" features a combination of thrash and stoner metal elements, with the scale predominantly tipping to the latter. Labelling the music on "Blind" thrash or crossover thrash is wrong in my book as especially the influence from 70s Black Sabbath is much stronger. A track like the thrashy "Damned for All Time" and the fact that Agell´s voice and delivery sometimes enter James Hetfield (Metallica) territory are probably the most weighty reasons that people sometimes label "Blind" a thrash metal release.

Agell´s voice and performance are decent enough, but when Keenan steps up to the michophone to sing "Vote With a Bullet" it´s obvious here is a singer with a much greater personality and a stronger and more distinct sounding voice. The instrumental part of the album is well performed. The riffs are heavy and mostly blues based and the rhythm section play organic and tight. The sound production is mostly well sounding, although I could have wished for a slightly more powerful guitar tone. Upon conclusion "Blind" is a good quality album by Corrosion of Conformity and definitely a step up on quality and originality compared to their previous releases but it´s not a flawless release and therefore a 3.5 star (70%) rating will do.

CROWBAR Broken Glass

Album · 1996 · Sludge Metal
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UMUR
"Broken Glass" is the 4th full-length studio album by US, New Orleans based sludge metal act Crowbar. The album was released through Pavement Music in September 1996. It´s the successor to "Time Heals Nothing" from 1995 and features one lineup change since the predecessor as drummer Craig Nunenmacher has been replaced by Jimmy Bower (Eyehategod, Down).

Stylistically this is Crowbar as we know and love them. Groove laden and ultra heavy sludge with lead vocalist/guitarist Kirk Windstein´s raw hardcore type shouting in front. It´s angry, it´s filled with despair, and it´s bleak, bleak, bleak.

"Broken Glass" opens with "Conquering" which is a relatively uptempo track, and it´s just not where Crowbar shines. "Like Broken Glass" works much better with its heavy grooves and riffs, "(Can't) Turn Away From Dying" adds some atmosphere to the band´s sound, and "Nothing" features sligthly more melodic singing (but that´s more or less the extent of variation). The remaining tracks on the album pretty much follow similar formulas (and simple vers/chorus structures), and while there are several killer riffs and heavy rhythms on the album, the tracks often end up sounding a bit too much the same. It´s nothing new in the world of Crowbar though and it is a minor issue, that the songwriting is not a little more creative and varied.

"Broken Glass" features a heavy, raw, and dark sound production, which suits the equally dark and heavy material well. It´s not an album where Crowbar have developed their sound or moved forward much since "Time Heals Nothing (1995)", but fans of the band won´t be disappointed and "Broken Glass" is overall a good quality release. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

EYEHATEGOD In The Name Of Suffering

Album · 1992 · Sludge Metal
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UMUR
"In The Name Of Suffering" is the debut full-length studio album by US, Louisiana based sludge metal act Eyehategod. The album was originally released in 1990 through the small French Intellectual Convulsion label (only pressed in 1500-2000 copies before the label was shut down), but was picked up by Century Media Records for a more widely available December 1992 re-release. Eyehategod formed in 1988 and released two demos, "Garden Dwarf Woman Driver" and "Lack of Almost Everything", in the years 1989 and 1990, respectively. "In The Name Of Suffering" was recorded and produced by the band themselves and cost them only $1000 to record.

"In The Name Of Suffering" is one of the earliest examples of sludge metal, before such a term was even coined. Stylistically the music is ultra heavy doom metal with a southern groove and aggressive snarling hardcore vocals. The album is drenched in a bleak atmosphere of despair and depression, and it´s the kind of release designed to crush your positive spirit and leave you a depressed cynic. Eyehategod paint the picture of a nightmare world, which song titles like "Depress", "Man Is Too Ignorant to Exist", and "Left to Starve" bear witness to.

The album features a raw, organic, and filthy sounding production. At times it almost sounds like the album was recorded live in the studio. Loud chrashing drums, distorted guitars/bass which often make screaming feedback noises, and lead vocalist Mike Williams screaming his lungs out in front. The material on the 10 track, 35:05 minutes long album are generally well written and there are several killer riffs and grooves on the album, but the songs aren´t always easy to tell apart, and a few more catchy hooks, could have made the album an even more effectful release. As it is, "In The Name Of Suffering" is completely uncompromising and there´s of course a great charm and boldness to that, and to those who enjoy their heavy music as raw and unpolished as possible, this is definitely a mandatory listen. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

OFFERNAT All Colours Retract

Album · 2022 · Sludge Metal
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BitterJalapeno
New and obscure sludge releases are something I have begrudgingly grown to approach with a certain degree of trepidation - a fear of being greeted with a bland sixty minutes of overly atmospheric music and a distinct lack of memorable riffs. Enter Danish three-piece outfit Offernat who (with their independently released debut) thankfully reinstate the almighty sludge riff – an especially pleasant surprise on a release containing only four tracks, the shortest of which still exceeds a duration of ten minutes. Having said that, All Colours Retract still boasts its fair share of atmospheric qualities but rather than reaching saturation point, the band has approached this with an optimal degree of curation, resulting in a wild ride of metal which fuses 00s progressive sludge with elements of doom, black metal and post-rock/metal.

Opener “Inside the Fog” wastes no time in smacking you in the face with a series of lurching, pelagic riffs, similar to the oceanic brutality of early Mastodon. The track builds in intensity as it reaches the halfway point of the +10-minute duration, developing an almost insurmountable feeling before crashing down to the ocean floor and erupting again with near overwhelming levels of feedback and screeching effects. More Mastodon influence is featured on the epic “The Winds” which showcases some slow yet intricate, atonal riffs, akin to the sounds explored on the 2004 masterpiece Leviathan. Post-rock and black metal influences play a significant role in the overall sound of the remainder of the album. All tracks besides the opener contain strong elements of both genres with the aforementioned epic “The Winds” opening with rapid blast beats and thick, atmospheric guitars while the middle section possesses qualities akin to the lighter side of Glaswegian post-rock titans Mogwai. “Harvest Return” and “Caught in Existence” both switch between suffocating riffs and relaxing clean guitar and bass melodies but over the course of their combined length of 23 minutes, the album descends to a bit of an anti-climax after the commendable quality of the first two offerings.

While musically diverse, the vocal department is stubbornly similar throughout. The overall tone shares a parity with the harsh vocal delivery a la Tom Araya of thrash metal legends Slayer and to a lesser extent, Lars-Göran Petrov of Entombed fame. While it does suit the music well, I was surprised to learn that lead vocal duties are shared between all three members of Offernat as this was not readily apparent to my ears. Cohesivity is another department where the band fall somewhat. As pleasant as the post-rock passage is on “The Winds”, its placement seems somewhat disjointed with the rest of the album and doesn’t slot in as nicely as the similar passages on the other tracks.

A worthwhile listen to any fan of sludge, All Colours Retract demonstrates a return of the glorious and all too absent sludge riff while maintaining a healthy atmospheric quality from the more modern facets of the genre. Despite the disappointment in the decline in quality in the latter half, Offernat are certainly more than worth keeping an eye on.

[Originally written for Sputnikmusic]

FUDGE TUNNEL The Complicated Futility Of Ignorance

Album · 1994 · Sludge Metal
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UMUR
"The Complicated Futility Of Ignorance" is the 3rd full-length studio album by UK, Nottingham based metal act Fudge Tunnel. The album was released through Earache Records in September 1994. It´s the successor to "Creep Diets" from 1993.

Stylistically the material on "The Complicated Futility Of Ignorance" are more of the same if you are familiar with the heavy groove laden metal of the two predecessors. The basis of the music are still heavy distorted groove riffs and rhythms, and sparse shouted vocals. The music has an almost hypnotic repetitive nature to it. It´s structurally simple music, and all tracks more or less focus on the heavy grooves and simple yet effective riffs. There really hasn´t been much development of sound and style since "Hate Songs in E Minor" was released in 1991, and although there is nothing wrong with the quality of the material or the musical performances, it was probably for the best that Fudge Tunnel disbanded after releasing "The Complicated Futility Of Ignorance". It does seem like the creative well had run dry and that they were more or less stuck playing the same thing over and over again.

"The Complicated Futility Of Ignorance" features a powerful, raw, and detailed sound production. It´s a step up from the sound production on "Creep Diets (1993)". So in many ways the album is a high quality release. Had Fudge Tunnel expanded on and experimented a bit more with their core sound, this could have been a very interesting release. Instead it´s a very solid effort featuring some powerful and effective grooves and riffs, which are instantly enjoyable, but it´s also a bit one-dimensional (and doesn´t sound vastly different from the two predecessors) and featuring 12 tracks and a total playing time of 62:37 it´s also a bit too long, when the material isn´t more varied than it is. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

sludge metal movie reviews

ISIS Clearing The Eye

Movie · 2006 · Atmospheric Sludge Metal
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Triceratopsoil
Probably only really for fans of ISIS (I mean, who else would buy a concert DVD than a fan of the band in question?), but an absolutely great experience. Witness an incredible band at their peak. The main feature here is the full 70 minute performance from Sydney Australia in 2005. Great cinematic camera work, a relaxing and overall fantastic performance of some of the best songs ISIS ever wrote. Top notch. No complaints here, though I'm a giant fanboy so take my opinion with a grain of salt or 10.

Most of the other live videos are curios, though they are quite good - not the same professional sound and video quality as the Australia concert.

I made my mom buy me this for Christmas a few years ago, ahaha

MASTODON The Workhorse Chronicles: The Early Years 2000-2005

Movie · 2006 · Sludge Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
The Workhorse Chronicles is a must have for any fan of the band. Period. The DVD contains a huge documentary, their first four music videos and live performances of just about every song the band had written up until the touring for Leviathan. The documentary is incredibly informative, with details on how the band formed, inter band relationships, the witting process, touring, their personal lives and what inspires them. Footage from their old bands, their earliest shows and backstage is mixed with candid interviews to let you in on just about every aspect of the band you could think of.

The dvd displays just what a down to earth collection of musicians Mastodon are, never acting like rock stars and always feeling honored to be where they are. While the dvd is completely serious and professional, fans of the band will already know what a humorous bunch of guys they are and will revel in the joking, sarcasm, unusual dreams and even an interview conducted in the shower.

Then you get the live performances taken from several sources, One concert while the band was still a Five Piece playing material off of the then upcomming LifesBlood EP which is recorded by the audience so isn’t of high audio/visual quality. Another Concert is from The Leviathan Tour is a sold out club, with higher Audio/visual quality and a career spanning track listing. Then there are several professionally recorded one off performances for television with superb sound and looks, With songs like ‘Workhorse,’ and ‘Mother Puncher,’ played to the highest standard with crystal clear audio. Finally the music videos which are welcome. Overall this dvd is a must have; with a superb documentary, four videos and an astonishing 29 live songs.

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