Band – Swamp Fiend
Album – Smoke Weed, Hail Satan
Country of Origin – Canada/USA
Genre – Blackened Stoner Doom
Release Date – June 16, 2023
Label – Adirondack Black Mass
Author – Hayduke X
Anyone who knows me well knows that there is some humor to my writing a review of this album. I won’t go into depth, but neither smoking weed nor hailing satan are reasons I’m personally involved with metal, but to each their own. Even with the campy (to my ears) album title, the debut Swamp Fiend is worth reviewing. Smoke Weed, Hail Satan caught my attention in the first place because it’s a collaborative project between Joe Caswell (Olim, Burden of Ymir, Drowstorm, and more) and Josh Hines (Starer, Chest Rockwell, Primeval Well, and more), two of my favorite current musicians. Seriously. Check out their other projects.
Recorded by the band themselves, and mixed by Neil Schneider, the tracks and lyrics were composed by Caswell. He also contributes some vocals, most of the guitar, and all the drums. Hines handles bass, in addition to the rest of the vocals and some additional guitar.
The duo bill this project as blackened stoner doom, which checks out well with what I’m hearing. At its core, bluesy stoner riffs carry along both clean and harsh vocals, and are anchored by an incredibly heavy bottom end. Thunderous even. Samples of bong hits and similar weed sounds burbling accent some of the tracks. What about the blackened part of the equation? Some of the harsh vocals might push the music into that territory, but more specifically, have you ever heard a tremolo picked blues riff? Press play and you will. I would not have thought such a thing would work, but it sure does here.
Caswell and Hines bring us the next generation of stoner doom here. Smoke Weed, Hail Satan is heavy fun full of filthy riffs and just what you need to bang your head to, whether or not you partake in bong hits.
Biography: Hayduke X has been writing for MoshPitNation since June of 2016. He is also a contributor to The Metal Wanderlust. Prior to joining the MoshPitNation team, Hayduke published reviews on his own blog Rage and Frustration. In addition, he has DJ’ed an online metal radio show of the same name as his blog, written for TOmetal.com, done interviews for Metal Rules, and collaborated with The Art of B Productions to create video interviews with a wide variety of bands.