MÆNTIS is an instrumental stoner doom band from Hildesheim Germany, formed in 2015 by Jan Gibron and Alexander Seidel (guitars), Andy Krüßel (drums) and Björn Behrens (bass). Last December, they released their debut album ‘I Have Tasted Devil’s Blood‘.

Each of the words of the album’s title are the tracks’ names, which are five long tracks. The first positive thing about this album is that from the initial hearing gives a very good impression. The second one just makes you love it. From the first track ‘I‘, MÆNTIS show their loyalty to the genuine Black Sabbath roots, creating a mesmerizing sound. The tracks are 9 to 10 minutes long, and evolve from slow doom tempo to stoner faster riffs, to dive again in heavier distorted riffs and bass lines. Reaching the last two tracks, there is a blackened tune in ‘Devil’s‘ which as an interesting turn draws your attention to where this might lead to. The last track ‘Blood‘ escalates with some screams from the distance and goes slowly to the initial riff of the first track, like a snake biting its tale. Although there are no lyrics, each track, especially the last two, create a vivid image of what is like to taste the “devils’ blood”.

The surprisingly strange thing about this album is that, although MÆNTIS follow the classic doom/sludge recipe and in the whole album there is a particular riff-theme which seems to be repeated, it never gets boring. ‘I Have Tasted Devil’s Blood‘ is a cool album and very well played. With this album the Hildesheim band took the baptism of fire, and I have a feeling that they will give us more interesting stuff in the future.

Mary Kalaitzidou