Review Summary: Well...you can't say it isn't consistent.
Bunkur has been given a bit of a pasting in around most of the metal spectrum for their extreme doom pretensions, and here I won't make too much of an exception. Their 2004 one-track album debut, Bludgeon does exactly what the name implies; dropping one crunching riff onto the listener, again and again, until they simply can't take it anymore.
Playing in arguably the most niche of metal subgenres, (Drone-doom), Bunkur's bass guitar driven heaviness holds its own in effectiveness for all of about ten minutes. After that it simply starts to become a drag. Shame that the album goes on another fifty-five minutes. It's misleading to imply that this is just a 'one riff' epic track, ala Dopesmoker. Here Bunkur have more then one riff, but unfortunately, about a tenth of the variation. Admittedly, the album alternates between chord progressions every ten or so minutes, and picks up the pace a bit in the middle, treating us to five minute changeovers. Whilst normally this could be considered a positive, these seem like tacked on afterthoughts and kind of negate the whole concept of bludgeoning. The drums don't really change much, being pummelling, leaden trudging the whole way through.
My negativity towards this album would be considerably less if I could detect anything more then the slightest change in the few sparse (and simple) riffs that do arise. The central 'riff' repeats itself about sixty times (at least) and only a few of these times do Bunkur alter the sound enough to be discernible. It doesn't really get more distorted or messy, at least not enough to justify a 65 minute run time. The vocals are a high point, but just as the riff is repeated ad nauseum, so too are these. True, they have more alternation in the later stages, but by then unless you're hooked on the riff by then, you'll probably just end up bored.
I can tolerate this album well enough, but even within the niche 'drone doom' metal there are far more effective uses of repetition and hypnotising drone. While it's interesting to see this band tackle the more extreme side of doom head-on in their debut, this album really feels like a five minute track, stretched relentlessly long. Recommended to only the most seasoned of doom metal fans.