Hailing from Chico, California, Cold Blue Mountain combines the simple, riff-driven approach of moderately paced doom, the frenetic energy of hardcore and the melodic elements of ’90s alternative rock to craft a highly accessible, unique brand of metal all its own.
Sparing the diehards from any “clean,” or non-screaming, singing whatsoever, vocalist Brandon Squyres is a rare breed in the world of frontmen not anchored by an instrument; he doesn’t try to cram vocals into every empty space. His willingness to let the songs breathe allows them to feel that much more dynamic, hinting at a keen understanding of vocals as an instrument rather than focal point.
The hooks present here are more often than not the guitar work of Will McGahan and Sesar Sanchez, building crushing refrains that live on in memory like a vocal melody.
This will be the band’s second tour through Eugene in support of album Old Blood, a concept record that was already largely written when Squyres joined in 2012. Stepping in, he wrote lyrics based upon the existing song titles.
“My goal was to make the lyrics go with the structures of the songs, like the score of a movie,” Squyres says. “Sesar wanted the theme to be about breaking the will of man. I liked the idea, but took it a little further.”
Cold Blue Mountain will be joined by Los Angeles sludge act North and Oakland blackened doom band Secrets Of The Sky 8 pm Monday, June 15, at Wandering Goat, 268 Madison St.; $5. 21-plus.