Doom with a twist

Stoner doom band Dirty Pagans infuse their sound with a wide range of infuences. (Supplied)

Matt Hewson

Dirty Pagans frontman Matty Dee can’t wait to share his band’s unique take on doom metal with the Barwon Club crowd on Friday, June 24.

“Metalheads are absolutely, completely dedicated,” Dee said.

“Wherever you go in the country, or in the world, they’re going to come out in force and bang their heads.

“It’s awesome to play in front of people that give you everything, and there’s no excuse for you not to give everything also.”

The band, composed of bassist James Russo, drummer Jarrad Taylor, guitarist Greg Challis and frontman Dee, takes inspiration from metal bands both classic and contemporary.

The Barwon Club gig will showcase material from Dirty Pagans’ latest album, The Family, a nine-track suite with a solid core of doom overlayed with tinges of alternative metal and heavy metal.

The band recorded most of The Family in 2019, completing it in early 2020 and expecting to release it the same year, but like many other creative projects the album was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We made the decision not to release it then,” Dee said.

“We didn’t want it to get lost, essentially. We wanted to tour the show.

“So we held off for a bit, and COVID just kept going and going, so for pretty much two years we didn’t get to play.”

The band finally released the album last year and have been promoting it ever since, as far as lockdowns and restrictions have allowed.

A notable point of difference between Dirty Pagans and most other doom bands are the high-pitched vocals of both Dee and Challis, at times reminiscent of classic metal singers such as Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden) and Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant.

Dee believes he and Challis’ vocal styles contribute to the band’s individual style.

“In the genre of doom the vocals are usually quite low,” he said.

“So I think our vocals separate us. I haven’t heard anyone putting that kind of spin on doom riffs, so I think we bring something different.”

Dee played down his role in the band, praising his bandmates’ musical abilities.

“I’m just the mouth from the south, surrounded by exceptional talent,” he said.

“The boys in the band are the business, I’m lucky to play with them. Everyone always enjoys the music and I get to be the front man, which is always fun.

“If people want to come down Friday night and see some sweet riff and roll, hear some high vocals and bang their heads we’d love to see them and say hi.”

The band will be joined at the Barwon Club Friday night by fellow riffers Dysphoriac, Ivy Black, and Small Lizard Big Brain. Doors open at 7pm.