History & BiographySpecializing in lengthy and brooding songs, the Americans have been compared to Katatonia and Opeth. The band was originally formed from the demise of Aeolachrymae in Montana, but ended up in Oregon. The act was also formed as John’s solo project initially.
Pale Folklore is a metaphor for tales of winter. 2001's Of Stone, Wind And Pillor is a five-track EP courtesy of the band and The End Records. It was originally intended as a 7" EP for Sweden's Iron Fist Records.
Daniel Breyer was AWOL on The Mantle. The End Records announced the Ashes Against The Grain CD for 2006. Ron Chick produced the album. Agalloch's fate is intertwined with Sculptured. The band issued The Demonstration Archive in 2008. The album was a collection of the band’s unsigned music from 1996 to 1998. It included both the From Which Of This Oak and Promo '98 demos. Profound Lore Records announced in 2010 that it would release a new full-length album by the band. The band was in the studio. The band would release its new album, Marrow Of The Spirit, on November 23rd through Profound Lore Records. The album featured Aesop Dekker on drums. Eisenwald issued an Agalloch package in mid-2012 called The Demonstration Archive 1996-1998 vinyl box set. It was a collection of material from the band's earlier years, including material from 1997's From Which Of This Oak demo, the Of Stone, Wind, And Pillor EP of 1998 and the Promo 98. To coincide with the recently recorded EP Faustian Echoes the band was touring Canada and USA. Taurus was supporting. The band embarked upon a North American 2014 summer tour. The Serpens In Cvlmination commenced on June 18th in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The band was joined by Obsidian Tongue, Vex, Jex Thoth and Thrones on select dates. In 2015, Agalloch was continuing to tour in support of The Serpent & The Sphere album, which was released in 2014 through Profound Lore. The band was touring the USA using the monicker Serpens In Cvlmination Western Hemisphere Tour MMXV. Haugham declared the end has come in 2016, then expressed intent to continue it as a solo project and then ended the band anyway. The members had drifted apart musically, had differing opinions on touring and John was going heavy on the alcohol. He would end up in Pillorian, among other projects, which monicker-wise was inspired by the Of Stone, Wind And Pillor EP.
The usual reformation came in 2023. Germany’s Prophecy Fest booked Agalloch for its reunion show in the original line-up. The line-up remained vocalist and guitarist John Haughm, guitarist Don Anderson and bassist Jason Walton. Drummer Hunter Ginn (Sculptured, etc.) was on drums for the event.
AGALLOCH - OF STONE, WIND AND PILLOR - THE END
Interested in a mix of early and doomy Paradise Lost and the brooding of goth bands like Fields Of Nephilim and Sisters Of Mercy? It is clear that fans of Katatonia et al should love this. At 27 minutes, this 5 track EP lasts almost as long as a Deicide full length. Having said that Kneel To The Cross is a Sol Invictus cover which bridges us to the EP's most ambient moment. The EP is the result of an unreleased 7', the addition of a cover and a short piece. How much value there is in such a release probably depends on your craving for despondency or Agalloch. The fantastic artwork of Gustav Doré used here is most beautiful and appropriate for the mood. - Ali "The Metallian"
AGALLOCH - ASHES AGAINST THE GRAIN - THE END
Agalloch’s label likes to assign many relations to the band, including black metal, doom, neo-folk and other catchall phrases borne by the hopes of a marketer. In essence, while in all probability drawing influences from various genres and corners, Agalloch is a sad and wretched soundscape of much appeal to fans of underground metal. The long-absent band is driven by a tightly focused rhythm, smooth and melodic guitar harmonies and the overall ambient abundance of pain. No doubt, the band is garnering comparisons to the over-hyped Opeth in its aura, although musically the two bands are discrete and distinct units, with the Americans having the advantage of a serene listen and objectivity given its lack of a sales profile in the metal market. With singer John Haughm focusing his efforts on the guitar most of the time the spotlight falls on the brooding music and good thing too for the band’s sense of distance and aloof terrestrial functionality carries a lot of weight. The album, for instance, ends with the three-part The Fortress Is Burning which in its 19-minute length features barely any singing. Sole concern is the strum of Fire Above Ice Below distinctly reminiscing a certain Metallica abortion of a song. The music’s sensibilities are that good and that moving. The typical song reaches the ten-minute mark and floats like the mists so be warned. - Ali “The Metallian”