Review Summary: M/
Dig deep into your attic's dusty boxes and find a House of the Dead III disk because I have the perfect record for antiquated zombie slaying. It's called Grotesque Offerings, the second full-length form Orlando, Florida based death metal outfit Druid Lord and boy does it peel back the finger nails.
Druid Lord is a death/doom metal band that's been around since 2010. They've released two albums in that 8 year span with the latest one catching some momentum thanks in part to it's incredibly metal artwork but mostly for the hard jams that the album brings. Similar in approach to it's contemporaries in Hooded Menace and Acid Witch, Druid Lord play a theatrical but traditional form of death/doom that's influenced by horror movies, beginning with the classic organ intro to the album and gory/cinematic song titles. While not reinventing the wheel by any means, Druid Lord ***ing rip. Riffs are thick and heavy, vocals are filthy, and the soaring leads, movie samples and occasional synth slather the brutality with a lucid coat of melancholy.
Throughout the lengthy 54 minute running time, Druid Lord mostly succeed with their approach. The guitar tone is crushing, the leads add emotional depth, and the tempos are varied enough to keep some of the tracks from droning on too long. That is where I'll nitpick a bit though. Some of the tracks could benefit from having a minute shaved off their run times because there are a few moments where things begin to drone after awhile and the music begins to sound a bit samey. Druid Lord are great mood setters and song crafters, they stir the imagination of the listener with their epic style, and the songs all have their hooks, melodies and head-banging rhythms, but but a little more panache with the song-writing would go a long way. They establish the apocalyptic scenario early on with the opening beast of a track, "The House of Drippping Gore" and run it through to it's final breath in the aptly titled closing instrumental "Final Resting Place".
Fans of death/doom should check this out when they get a moment. House of Dripping Gore, Black Candle Seance, and Creature Feature are all ***ing bangers. And I like the sound that Druid Lord have established here, all I want now from them is some streamlined songwriting and I'll be set.