The Ditch And The Delta Deliver Invigoratingly Intense Sludge Metal On New LP

The music from the Salt Lake City, Utah-based band The Ditch And The Delta feels invigorating. The group performs super heavy metal that intermingles the thunderous atmosphere of some of the heaviest doom with the menacing, thick-toned guitars of super intense sludge. They rocket their mixture forward on the fumes of frequently quite intense, strangely captivating melody.

It’s somewhat startling, at least at first, how their new self-titled record feels so thunderously heavy and so richly catchy. The melodies here feel poised to stick in listeners’ heads, and the group doesn’t meander around before putting this element of their craft on display. For example, track two — called “Exile” — features loudly performed yet emotionally contemplative heavy metal melody front-and-center.

Ultimately, The Ditch And The Delta feel like they’re performing some super catchy rock that’s been amped up to a staggering intensity. In the process of amplifying their music’s thickness and power, the group never loses the poignancy of their melody. Right in the middle of the band’s momentous thunderstorm of sludge metal, listeners can also kick up their feet along with richly fist-pumping melody.

This interplay of elements including ferocious, gut-rattling heaviness and enlivening melody continues on quite consistently through the record, although the band also include a great deal of richly immersive dynamic swings. The dynamic variety makes the record feel more like a lasting journey than a flash-in-the-pan experience. For example, the band’s comparatively lengthy song “Aesthetics of Failure” gets quite contemplatively restrained at times, but the power always remains clearly evident — and more energy is always just around the corner. Follow-up track “Molt” rolls right back into more energetic (although still lumberingly heavy) guitar melody. Meanwhile, hard-hitting drum barrages take some of the spotlight at moments like parts of the track “Bleed the Sun,” and all of the elements cohesively roll together for the energetic, emotionally upending lurches of super heavy melody on “Hiraeth.”

From the very first moments, the menacingly intense melodies of The Ditch And The Delta grab listeners’ attention, and the power does not let up down to the fist-pumping, progressive metal-inflected closing track.

5/5 Stars

The self-titled album from The Ditch And The Delta is available now via Prosthetic Records. Check out the music below: