Metalhead Series: 6 Sludge Metal bands from Ireland

By Jacqueline Russe / February 4, 2020
Sludge Metal bands from Ireland
This time, we’re getting a bit darker, with these six electrifying Sludge Metal bands from Ireland!

Sludge Metal is a subgenre of metal that formed through combining elements of doom metal with hardcore punk. The music is typically harsh and abrasive, often featuring equally harsh and shouted vocals and heavily distorted instruments. It also mixes the rather slow tempo and dark atmosphere of doom metal, with the more aggressive, fast tempo of hardcore punk. These are six incredible Sludge Metal bands from Ireland.

zhOrazhOra album cover

The four-piece sludge metal band zhOra formed in Clonmel, County Tipperary, in 2011 and have since then become one of the most recognisable names in the Irish sludge metal scene. Their music has always been about displaying the uncomfortable innards of mental wellbeing. They have played shows all over Ireland and toured extensively through the UK and Europe together with bands such as Conan, The Faceless, Monolord, Coilguns and Dictated. 

Recommended Album:

Ethos, Pathos, Logos (2017)

7.5 Tonnes of Beard7.5 Tonnes of Beard album cover

Featuring members of ASIWYFA, Diet Pills, Residual Effect, Stand-Up Guy and Gacy’s Threads, 7.5 Tonnes of Beard are a Sludge Metal band from Belfast. The band started during one of the European tours of ASIWYFA as a small thought project and developed into a full-time band shortly after. They combine elements of sludge, doom and heavy metal to produce art made of pure noise. The wail of their guitars would terrify casual listeners, but within it are intricacies embedded in slowed down riffs.

Recommended Album:

Denied The Basics (2013)

OkusOkus album cover

Okus are a Crust/Punk/Sludge Metal band hailing from Drogheda in County Louth. The band features ex-members of The Dagda, Bleeding Rectum, Scavenger, Fuckhammer and Sodb. They formed in 2012 and released their debut album a year later. With their music, they take a nihilistic and bleak look at the world through war, religion, economics and other topics. This March will mark the beginning of their Ireland tour, with stops in Dublin, Limerick and Belfast.

Recommended Album:

Scourge (2016)

Iona Death CultIona Death Cult album cover

Iona Death Cult rose from the ashes of Dublin stoner rock troupe Terminal Commuter and deals in epic dystopian sludge metal anthems with a bit of a psychedelic twist. Starting as an instrumental band and releasing their first two-track EP The Cult is Real, they quickly found that to somewhat limit their songwriting. So, they started writing songs that were more aggressive and vocal, resulting in their debut album Aid to Worship

Recommended Album:

Aid to Worship (2018)

Elder DruidElder Druid album cover

Elder Druid is a 5-piece Sludge/Doom Metal band that formed in early 2015 in Ballymena. Taking heavy influences from Black Sabbath, Electric Wizard and Kyuss, the band fuses elements of sludge metal guitar riffs with the dark atmosphere of doom metal. They are known for their enchanting, occult lyrics broken by guttural war cries to tell the stories of warlocks and wizards. They have released one EP and two full-length albums, with the newest one only coming out last month.

Recommended Album:

Carmina Satanae (2017)

So Much For The SunSo Much For The Sun album cover

The doom/sludge metal trio So Much For The Sun is all about heavily downtuned guitars, slow heavy riffs and dark lyrics. They have been part of the sludge metal scene for a few years now, with their first EP Thoughts Of A Stoner being released in 2013, followed by a second EP in 2017. This year marks the release of their third EP Face The Dark, with a planned release in April.

Recommended Album:

So Much For The Sun (2017)

Some honourable mentions: Groove Metal bands Grey Stag, Zlatanera and Ten Ton Slug, as well as Post Metal bands Partholón, Raum Kingdom and Third Island can be seen as Sludge Metal bands as well.

Have you seen any of these incredible Sludge Metal bands from Ireland live? Did you like them? Or have we forgotten any good bands? Just let us know in the comments!

About the author

Jacqueline Russe

Jacqueline is a German journalist and editor for Babylon Radio who likes comics, manga and video games. She is a state-certified translator for both English and German, currently working on her Bachelor's in Technical Translation.

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