Whirlwind Hymns

Falling Giants

Three of the founding members of Italian band FALLING GIANTS came together in the middle […]
December 3, 2023

Three of the founding members of Italian band FALLING GIANTS came together in the middle of 2016, during the summer to form the band, they were looking for common ground with a sound that could be a mix of stoner metal and psychedelic rock. However they came to invent their own sound that would also incorporate elements of sludge metal into their current sound, they released a three track demo in 2018 as they began their musical expedition. The three members of the band so far were vocalist/guitarist RUST, bassist/vocalist FRANK and drummer BRIAREO but after the demo release, they became a four piece band with the arrival of PEST on guitar. Their sound went under further development as they went on to release a three track EP titled ENTER THE ABYSS in 2019.


This EP certainly made a good impression and as the band puts it, the EP ‘consolidates the mix of sludge, doom, black, stoner and neo-psychedelia’. The band went on from here to do a split album with another band released in 2020, but then the Covid-19 pandemic came and delayed the bands progress, this of course meant they weren’t able to begin recording until the early parts of 2022. However this was to be their debut album but unfortunately they parted ways with PEST their guitarist, who left so he could focus more on his own band, so out with the old, in with the new, as guitarist APSYCHOS stepped in to join FALLING GIANTS. Their debut album was titled WHIRLWIND HYMNS and was released earlier this year.


So if you are into bands such as; EYEHATEGOD, BLACK SABBATH, TYPO NEGATIVE, SLEEP, DARKTHRONE, BATHORY as well as TOOL and MASTODON. Then perhaps you should check this band out, they certainly have a lot to offer for listeners of black metal, doom metal and stoner/sludge metal, nevertheless they have handcrafted their very own unique sound that should be complimented fully. So their debut album begins with the first track which is “Northwest Passage + Where The Deserts Collide” as we hear slow but echoing guitar riffs being played providing an ominous atmosphere so far. As this guitar solo part develops more, we can hear other surrounding sound effects, as single notes being played on bass guitar also acts as an intro before imploding, amplified guitar sound gives the cue to drums and vocals to come into the mix.


The soundscape and atmosphere does indeed act as a metaphor for a desert and perhaps feelings of loneliness as well maybe fear or anxiety. Vocals are really drawn out and being sustained as well, allowing the vocalist to pronounce and prolong those high and mid range notes of evil nature. Drums follow along slowly, playing accents or cymbals on cue when guitar strums a louder note, the tempo quickens a bit later on in the track as drums rumbles on as vocals become more aware and active. A short pause with lead guitar and sound effects gives way to a crescendo for the band to lead into the next track which is “An Enveloped Prophecy”. As there is a more macabre sound as before, lead guitar comes in with drums, at  slower tempo once again, even hearing kick drum as a metronome for the other elements to follow along to.


Lead guitar in there with heavy riffs and distortion as well, vocals slurring but this is very effective as a second vocal part comes in with more sickening words of agitation or grit. A slow drum marching pattern then is heard with lead guitar swirling into a classic and psychedelic manner, that can certainly be the highlight of this track, but drums will take on the narrative when the time is right to take the lead or jump in for a short phase of play. Vocals enjoy some fun with cymbals being struck in between the words from the singer, before a more driving drum pattern takes shape, leaving the lead guitar in the distance. The dialogue here between each element is very clear and well arranged as there is an opportunity for each instrument to make their contribution.


“Hopediver” is up next with lead guitar at the helm steering the ship of this upcoming band as vocals also come into the frame, drums slowly but gently hitting those toms to provide depth and warmth to the track. This is a much shorter track as the two previous tracks are a total of ten minutes each so a lot to take in, this third track is certainly more settled down for the first minute or two at least, vocals become more harsh. As the third minute passes by, there is more activity, the tension rising in lead guitar and drums, til the climax is reached where guitar is in overdrive as drums are pelting along so very well executed. Slowing down after the fifth minute as we head into the next track swiftly as we can with “Fall Meditation” comes up next.


The fourth track has a more clear cut approach, straight to the point with vocals and drums making their way with lead guitar also encouraging both drums or vocals to keep the momentum up as much as they can. The tempo really goes up now and here we have a more aggressive and pulsating atmosphere with drums and guitar driving the instrumentation onwards with confidence and self-belief. Calming down now with lead guitar marking those accents with cymbals from the drummer as they are struck in a psychedelic manner, allowing them to ring out, as lead guitar pulls back to let vocals back into the mix. Guitar playing in a blues type of style, but conscious of vocals and drums leading by example, vocals do bow out for a short time as well.


Lead guitar picking notes nicely and smoothly as drums glide along with basic kick and snare with a cymbal also giving the track a stoner twist. Now into the next track which is “The Wind Shifts” as guitar plays slowly as before, drums quietly creeping in but giving lead guitar and vocals space to themselves to expand their approach in this track. Vocals then go freely into a psychedelic phase, lead guitar and drums still taking small steps, as vocals bow out for an instrumental section which goes on til we get to the starting point of the next track which is “Paint The Woes”. Vocals shout as drums and lead guitar proceed to go on an adventure together, drums crunching their way onwards as vocals keep on bellowing those screams of angst, vocals even become almost satanic as drums pulsate on a faster movement.


An instrumental section takes a hold on, vocals come and go as they continue to persist, drums play so well and are very effective in conversion with bass guitar, now we approach the final track as the big bang of drums creates that last transition into “The Trail Of Dust Men”. A kick drum and lead guitar melody conquers at first with imploding notes on both instruments, which continues on with vocals appearing for irregular bouts of anguish or impending doom. This is certainly a great example of psychedelia and even the tempo is set at the right pace to give each instrument their own space, however all goes quiet when lead guitar takes command on a solo excursion before drums emerge and vocals also coming back.

It is but a steady tempo now with no heroics from any instrument, until heavier guitar riffs are in play once more for the closing outro of this album, it finishes very much on a strong combined effort for the whole band to say farewell. So overall it is very flexible, but the lead guitar, drums and bass guitar tend to prolong their sound, as drums plays loosely and creatively as well. It is certainly a good album however perhaps there could be more of the heavier guitar riffs, drums could contribute to more active sound, but it is possible this could change with the next release for FALLING GIANTS, but I did enjoy the atmosphere they create.

6 / 10

Had Potential








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"Whirlwind Hymns" Track-listing:

1. Northwest Passage + Where The Deserts Collide

2. An Enveloped Prophecy

3. Hopediver

4. Fall Meditation

5. The Wind Shifts

6. Paint The Woes

7. The Trail Of Dust Men

Falling Giants Lineup:

RUST - Vocals and Guitar


FRANK - Bass Guitar and Vocals


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