Worm Ouroboros
Worm Ouroboros

We live in a time where certain aspects of metal music are having an identity crisis. I’m an open-minded person and I do enjoy some of these more unique sub-genres that are manifesting, but some leave me utterly confused and perplexed. Most noticeable experimentation is happening in the black, sludge/noise, and post rock divisions. With a band like Worm Ouroboros, one has to be ready to shed the metal almost completely and be very open to an unconventional mix of atmosphere, folk, and dreamy soundscapes with minimal distortion.

Profound Lore is known for dark music. Worm Ouroboros may not be the heavy you’re looking for but this Bay Area underground group creates a thick desolate atmosphere just as disturbing. Lorriane Rath (guitar, vocals, and flute) was the main songwriter for The Gault, and has done work with John Gossard of Weakling and Asunder. The music is slow and dreary with a lot of delayed guitar effects and soft sung female vocals courtesy of Lorriane and Jessica Way (guitar, vocals, and glockenspiel). Fans of bands like Earth, Russian Circles, and the sludge of bands like Mouth of the Architect should enjoy this. In all honesty, it’s very tripped out jazz/lounge music and it sounds like something you’d hear on a David Lynch film. This is very artsy stuff.

First listen through and all the songs meld together. There is no distinct separation or hook. It’s all just stoned out of your mind atmosphere with no real direction. That’s not to say it isn’t good, but there is no structure. It’s very freeform. Relaxing and hypnotic, this self-titled debut unfolds over multiple listens, exposing truly magnificent layers and deep convictions.

Though most of the album is murky and somber, the distortion kicks in (“A Birth, A Death”, “Winter,” “Riverbed,” “Pearls”) broadcasting doom-laden sludge with underlined melody that really reminds me of bands like Mouth of the Architect, Isis, and Red Sparrows.

Not your typical Profound Lore release, yet just as doleful and dark as this type of thing can be. Worm Ouroboros are talented, forward thinking musicians, and it’s going to be interesting to see what direction they take in the future. Though very well done, Worm Ouroboros is going to be a hard sell considering their gentle approach. Sit back with a glass of your favorite wine, have a puff, and lose yourself in this release. I cannot imagine a better way to experience it.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shane Wolfensberger
January 28th, 2010


  1. Commented by: gabaghoul

    this is great – relaxing like you said but I actually prefer the heavier post-rock moments like the second half of “Winter”

  2. Commented by: elguerosinfe

    Nice album. I think they have at lot more in common with bands like Star of Ash, Amber Asylum, or even the quieter moments of Peccatum [Lost In Reverie or Moribund People] than Earth or MOTA.

    I also got a lot more of a melancholy, gothic vibe from them than a “tripped out jazz/lounge” vibe.

  3. Commented by: Shane

    I’ve never heard any of those bands you mentioned elguerosinfe. It was kind of hard for me to describe this because, well, I’ve never really listened to anything like this. But yes you are right, it is more melancholy and goth like. It is something that grows on you. Wish they did more heavy though.

  4. Commented by: gabaghoul

    Star of Ash and Peccatum are both projects of Ihsahn and his wife Ihriel. I’m sure you’ve heard Peccatum back in the day. Star of Ash is newer and more electronic-based.

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