Prescott, Arizona based doom/sludge band Ugly stream their new full-length album, »Autograph«, which was just released on May 5th, 2023 via Satanik Royalty Records.
03. Challenging Ego/Challenging Pride
04. In My Pocket
Courtesy of Earsplit PR:
MetalSucks is currently streaming »Autograph«, the new full-length from Arizona doom/sludge/noise quartet Ugly. The premiere came in advance of the record’s official unveiling last Friday, May 5th, on Satanik Royalty Records.
Ugly builds a tonal environment that is at times, angelic… just long enough to win your trust; then tries to kill you by dragging you to the depths with primal, flesh-upon-gear, rhythmic upheaval of any notion of good faith and wellbeing. Taking conceptual queues from bands like Swans, Dystopia, and Noothgrush, and adding musical complexity and depth to arrive at something disgusting all on its own, Ugly is at once melodic, looming, and horrific.
Writes MetalSucks in part, “»Autograph« features a sort of take-no-prisoners approach to its wall of sound… Through its nigh-apocalyptic sound and fury, »Autograph« is a hard listen in the sense that it’s constantly layering more darkness on top of itself.”
Recorded and mixed throughout 2021 by the band’s own Brandon Hayden (Endorphins Lost) at The Sunroom in Prescott, Arizona and mastered by Greg Wilkinson (Brainoil, Deathgrave, Autopsy) in July 2022 at Earhammer in Oakland, California, »Autograph« serves as Ugly’s most refined, progressive, and abysmal contribution to date. Thematically, the record focuses on deep-seated illusions of vanity, acceptance, and fanatical egocentric ideology that blights human beings to the core. The music is the culmination of thoughts and feelings left out in all that cold and darkness too long. We all love a little self-sabotage, don’t we? Come get your daily dose of deprivation. Just turn on your stereo and listen for the answers…
Conceived in August of 2016, Ugly set out with one mission in mind: to make a sonic backdrop that reflects the current state of the world as they interpret it. The reality we cohabit is cruel, devious, and relentless and the band’s output inherently reflects the sentiment.
2017’s self-released debut Butcher Demo were rudimentary by design to focus the narrative on the message of our mutual day-in-day-out bitter contempt for one another with music often repetitious and mechanical to symbolize the every-person-every-day grind that wears us more and more into nothing. As time went on, Ugly’s output progressed into moodier more melodic realms.
2018’s »Wall« EP is the first instance of the inevitable dynamic shift. The songs found here are more of a journey through different aspects of emotion, both mystifying and brutal. These songs expand on our infinite capacity of self-imploding obduracy. Another year’s worth of multi-state tours and it was back to the studio, this time with Greg Wilkinson at the controls in the prestigious Earhammer Studio in Oakland, California to record their debut full-length, 2019’s »Betrayal«. This capture is the sludge laden odyssey that finds Ugly at their most experimental and devastating. The songs are five pain filled journeys of grief, self-loathing, and savage fury focusing on the ways we betray our bodies, our loved ones, and our own destiny.
A successful West Coast tour followed and as we crept into the darkness of the 2020 worldwide lockdown, the sources of inspiration from new profound suffering never extinguished. By 2022, the world looked darker than ever. A song extending the feelings of current affairs called »Grateful« was recorded for a split 7” with Las Vegas hardcore power trio, Life’s Torment.
“The band’s name is Ugly and the song is called »Dirt«. If there’s ever been more of a signal that a song is about to be filthy, grimy noise rock, I’m not sure I’ve seen it.” – Metal Injection on »Dirt«
“There is a teeth gnashing that infects every instrument they assault you with here. The tribal drums the song [“Suckle”] ends with might be the album’s most Neurosis–like moment… This is a band that travels in similar sonic realms as the bands who influenced them, but takes the familiarity of those aural colors and makes them their own in a beautifully dark and unsettling fashion. Fans of forward-thinking sludge, not just heavy for the sake of being heavy, should check this album out, as its wonders await you.” – No Clean Singing
Brandon Hayden – Bass, Vocals
Krysta Martinez – Synth, Vocals, Loops, Aux Percussion
Chris Stevens – Guitar
Ben Black – Drums