Maryland’s doom metal group Yatra are just really fuckin’ great. They’re great, and — if you like menacing doom swirling with heavy psych-inflected metal rhythms, then you should listen to their new album, which is called All Is Lost, drops on Oct. 9 via Grimoire Records, and is also really fuckin’ great. This article is the fourth one on this website to feature the band — it’s not because they’re the only doom metal band in the world! It’s because if the name Yatra is attached to a song, it’s gonna be good.
All Is Lost, which is the group’s third album in two years, feels majestically heavy. There’s a bit of an otherworldly vibe to the record, as if hitting play sends the listener into some land of fantastical battles and otherwise mythical beasts, like the being depicted on the album’s cover art. There’s a persistence in the sound — Yatra sound totally dedicated to their craft, and there really aren’t any cracks here. The riffs march on with a fist-pumping intensity, carried along by the roaring vocals from the band’s Dana Helmuth, and there’s not really a let-up. The dynamic sound sticks.
At the same time, All Is Lost feels quite accessible. Looked at or listened to one way, the album feels like kicking back in the face of the apocalypse, because there’s not much that we can do to change the entire course of existence anyway. What we can do, on the other hand, is cruise with our heads held high through the haze, knowing that we’ve put in the work to make a place for ourselves. All Is Lost feels like a part of that place (ironically enough, considering the album title). The big, booming riffs feel like a confrontation with apocalyptic devastation, but there’s not really an overwhelming despair. Instead, the album feels kind of like diving headfirst into an apocalyptic crush, proving that we’ll continue on with power.
Sound-wise, Yatra definitely run on a doom foundation. The band present waves of sound embedded with their monstrous riffs, cavernous basslines, and sludgy drum rhythms. “Winter’s Dawning,” for instance, runs on a kind of immersive and simmering menace; it’s the album’s second track, and it poignantly sets the tone. (Yatra return to basking in this searing menace at other points.) Across All Is Lost as a whole, Yatra occasionally leans into a powerful sort of heavy psych metal swagger, as if they’ve metaphorically fried their doom metal riffs in a southern swamp. “One for the Mountain,” for instance, has some of these bursts of psych metal riffing, and they appear elsewhere, although never really to the exclusion of the band’s monstrous, creeping doom, which always has a space to shine.
As exemplified as the album launches into its concluding half by the heavy and soaring riffs of “Talons of Eagles,” there’s a real sense of triumph here. It’s an awesome listen.
Listen to All Is Lost by Yatra below!