Heavy metal has more subgenres than any reasonable person can keep up with. Tastes at The Typing Monkey offices skew toward the blues-based stuff from the '70s, the NWOBHM, and the nearly self-explanatory genres: doom, stoner and sludge.
It's within those last three that Düsseldorf, Germany trio Aleph Null operate. The trio can blast out riffs heavier than a bison's balls during mating season -- the classic Black Sabbath devil's chord blooze that's been the cornerstone of metal since the 1970s. And they can pull it all back to fuzzy, lingering drones that build the kind of tension that is a hallmark of doom metal. Throw in the shredded, grunge-style vocals and kids, you've got a winner.
We call your attention to Aleph Null not only because they're a good band with a strong sense of dynamics and mood, but because so far, every recording they've made is offered up for free download via their Bandcamp site. And their new LP Nocturnal is a bruiser.
If you're doom/stoner/sludge-curious, you can't beat free, and Aleph Null isn't a bad place to start. Play "Black Winged Cherub" for a taste:
We admit that Nocturnal didn't bowl us over as immediately as their previous EP Belladonna (2013). The four tracks on that collection sound looser and a little more cosmic to our ears. Check out "Solar Sail" to hear the contrast:
If you like what you hear, Aleph Null says download it, people, for this music is like Jesus' love. It is ours to accept. And if this sort of brain-melting sound pleases you, enjoy your wanderings around the Web to seek out more of the same. Many doom/stoner/sludge metal bands offer "pay what you can" downloads, so do that. And buy a t-shirt.
Stonerobixx and Doommantia, are two great websites dedicated to these subgenres. And we'd be remiss not to mention the late, great Cosmic Hearse blog, our gateway into most of this stuff.