King Woman reinvigorates sludge and doom metal at Backbooth

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With doom and sludge metal, the discerning listener has to be increasingly picky, as so many bands get bogged down in cartoonish Black Sabbath signifiers and clich├ęs, but thankfully, San Francisco's King Woman are reinvigorating the form. The brainchild of Kristina Esfandiari (also of the stellar Miserable), KW started as a solo venture and now has expanded into a full band, and as personnel expanded so did the scope of their eldritch sound. King Woman craft a bleak, anguished wall of tar informed as much by Chelsea Wolfe as by Grief. And for that matter, even beyond the Jarboe-esque commanding bellow of Esfandiari, we detect a pulpy deathrock influence. And why not? King Woman's new album, Created in the Image of Suffering, is definitely a prime noose-tightening soundtrack. Not only that, the goddamn thing is being put out by prime mover metal label Relapse in a beautiful vinyl edition. It's the perfect physical medium for a new set of songs that are fully realized and cinematic like the best horror and/or Tarkovsky films. We've been following King Woman since the Doubt cassette a few years back and are eager to see how this new sonic ambition plays out live, in the company of fellow metal iconoclasts Oathbreaker.

with Oathbreaker, Jayle Jayle, Arms | 7 p.m. Sunday, March 19 | Backbooth, 37 W. Pine St. | 407-999-2570 | backbooth.com | $12




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