It’s the weekend! Is there a better way to start it than with the latest installment of “Funeral Doom Friday?" This weekly column looks to shed some light onto some of the darkest, most depressing, and discordant metal out there. Funeral Doom stems from the deepest depths of Death-Doom and Dirge music. Each week, the goal is to highlight some of the newest music or rediscover classic works from some of the earliest bands and originators such as Australia’s Mournful Congregation, United States’s Evoken, UK’s Esoteric and the Finnish Thergothon. Feel free to share your opinions and suggestions in the comments!
This week, Funeral Doom Friday is taking a look at a new band born in New York. Weeping Sores is a death/funeral doom trio featuring Doug Moore and Stephen Schwegler of Pyrrhon and Seputus. The band began as a project for Moore to explore his guitar playing. Eventually, the project grew to include Schwegler and violinist Gina Hendrika Eygenhuysen, who has contributed to Hell and other metal bands. Raw demo material soon grew into today's feature, a promising, self-titled EP. Doug spoke at length about the beginnings of Weeping Sores, stating:
I was a guitarist before I was a vocalist and have written a bunch of material for Pyrrhon and Seputus over the years, but haven't had a project where I was actually responsible for performing/recording guitar parts for quite some time. After I graduated from college, it became difficult to find the time and energy to practice regularly, and I eventually more or less stopped playing for a few years. About a year and a half ago, I found myself longing for an outlet for my dormant instrumentalist instincts. So, I decided to jumpstart my personal guitar practice by writing some material that wouldn't fit in my other bands.
My goal was to write simple, instinctive music with an emphasis on songwriting over invention or brutality. On some level, I think I wanted to make a singer/songwriter record. But since I have no idea how to do that sort of thing, it became a metal project instead. So, I set about writing this stuff, intending to assemble some bedroom demos for my own enjoyment and to leave it at that. But then Steve from Pyrrhon/Seputus got involved as the drummer & mixing engineer, the project sprawled, and we eventually found ourselves with three songs and a cover that collectively sound more like a short album than a demo. (The material retains a lot of demo-y DIY qualities, though.)
In the meantime, I met Gina by random happenstance at MDF a couple of years ago and quickly discovered that our musical tastes had a ton of overlap. She's a gifted violinist who's played with other metal bands, and since our instincts tend to align, I felt confident asking her to write string parts over the existing material, even though we'd never jammed before and she lives on the other side of the country from us. The results speak for themselves, in my opinion.
It is immediately apparent from the opening moments of "The Nature of Faith" that the trio is onto something fascinating. The interplay of Doug's guitars and Gina's violins is an intriguing dichotomy. At times, melancholia will billow out from the bow of Gina's violin and quell the furious guitars. In other moments, the strings weave together and create a tormented union of emotions. See the album's third song, "The Shadow in the Seer," for example. Yet, what seems to be the most striking theme of Weeping Sores is how well Moore and Schwegler transition from death metal's frenetic tempos to the slower trudge of death and funeral doom. Moore employs a deeper growl than usual while Schwegler trades in blast beats for slower, rolling patterns. While surely these talents are not newfound, their application to this new idea is very impressive.
This self-titled EP is an exciting proposition for the future of Weeping Sores.Even for a project so new, it carries a great amount of clout. The members of the band possess immense talent. Anyone who has regularly listened to Pyrrhon and Seputus or dug into the Portland metal scene could agree. Digital copies of the album are available through Weeping Sores' Bandcamp. Additionally, CD copies are available for pre-order through Dullest Records. Check out the band on Facebook and listen to the album below.