Album review: King Woman – Celestial Blues

King Woman continue to soundtrack the shadows on brilliant second album, Celestial Blues.

Album review: King Woman – Celestial Blues
Angela Davey

For those still clinging to the concept of time, it’s difficult to believe that King Woman’s debut Created In The Image Of Suffering was released four years ago, as its explosive impact has kept it sounding fresh. This is in no small part due to the formidable force of nature that is vocalist Kristina Esfandiari, also the mastermind behind Dalmatian (rap), Miserable (shoegaze) and NIGHTCRWLER (drone). Despite the cognitive dissonance between each of these projects, they all have one thing in common: Kristina’s distinct yet incredibly versatile voice. This is put to full use on King Woman's second album Celestial Blues.

Labelled as being a doom metal opus, this assessment feels lazy and uninspired considering the kaleidoscopic journey of noise this record take its listeners on. Hushed lullaby style songs sit alongside weighty slabs of ’90s-inspired grunge, while regular flashes of thunderous metal add just enough heaviness to keep things interesting. Kristina’s vocal range fluctuates throughout, cycling through ethereal whispers, seductive croons and banshee like shrieks with moments that are reminiscent of Is This Desire? era PJ Harvey.

Celestial Blues is a truly immersive experience that is not only as good as its predecessor, it has evolved beyond the blueprint they set out on their first album to expand their sound into new and exciting territory. Whether you’re a fan of slowcore, grunge, doom or shoegaze there is a song for absolutely everyone to enjoy on this album. Simply put, it is a must listen.

Verdict: 4/5

For fans of: Chelsea Wolfe, Subrose, True Widow

Celestial Blues is released on July 30 via Relapse

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