True Widow – As High As The Highest Heavens And From The Center To The Circumference Of The Earth


TRUE WIDOW play Lee’s Palace May 3, opening for Surfer Blood and Trail of Dead. See listing. Rating: NNN

Sometimes you have to sacrifice variety to create a mood. That’s the case on True Widow’s second album, on which the Dallas trio employ a single formula: heavy doom riffs plus stoic male/female harmonies plus simple, plodding drumbeats, all delivered at a glacial pace.

The effect is monotonous, but it’s a calming, immersive monotony that pulls you into an all-encompassing “stonegaze” wash. It’s so trance-inducing that in the few instances when the album ditches this mode – like on the faster Night Witches or on the brief acoustic Interlude – the result is jarring.

It takes restraint to stick to such a slow, rigid tempo, but True Widow are masters of control. Even when Dan Phillips indulges in a guitar solo on highlight Boaz, it’s more an extension of the song’s trajectory than a break from its self-defined pace.

Top track: Boaz

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