The four-song EP follows Rundle and Thou’s previous collaborative effort, 2020’s excellent May Our Chambers Be Full. In fact, the four songs on The Helm of Sorrow were included on a “Diehard” edition of the LP released by Sacred Bones, but the tracks were too good to exist solely as bonus cuts.
The first track we heard from the EP was a powerful cover of The Cranberries‘ “Hollywood”, which re-interpreted the song in a depressive doom style. Rundle’s vocals complement Thou’s crushing sound with ease, adding a new melodic element to the latter’s extreme brand of Louisiana sludge metal.
From our brief preview of the new EP, which is now streaming on digital platforms, The Helm of Sorrow is the logical counterpart to May Our Chambers Be Full. Perhaps these tracks were cut to keep that already lengthy album concise. Maybe they didn’t fit the track sequencing. Whatever the case, we’re glad the artists decided to give the songs a wider release. For fans of the 2020 LP, it’s more quality content.
Also of note are Craig Mulcahy’s striking visual works adorning the LP, EP, and all press imagery — including the image above. Rendered in muted hues of purple and grey, the hooded, masked figures fall “somewhere between modern high fashion and classical Renaissance,” in the words of the press release.