1823, the title of Alabama doom quartet EMBR's forthcoming new album, is not just some arcane number. It has deep personal significance. The band's drummer, Eric Bigelow, had been on the list for a kidney for around four years before he finally received a transplant in May 2019, right in the middle of the writing of the album. The donor was deceased, and all Bigelow and his wife, EMBR singer Crystal Bigelow, know about the person is that she was a young woman, age 18-23.
In addition to titling the since-completed album with those digits, EMBR have also dedicated the LP to the donor and the surgeons at Vanderbilt hospital in Nashville, Tennessee. And they've teamed today with Revolver to premiere standout cut "Your Burden" — a Sabbathian dirge swirling with Southern Gothic vibes and lifted above the fog by Crystal's soaring vocals — along with its moody, black-and-white DIY music video. Watch and listen above, and read Eric's comments below. 1823 is due out via New Heavy Sounds on July 17th — you can pre-order it here, including in a deluxe vinyl edition, in two-color black/blue cosmic swirl vinyl.
"Heavy, melodic, emotional and haunting," Eric says of "Your Burden." "This new song by EMBR echos melancholy and despair while giving a sense of hope and comfort to those with the strength to carry on in spite of their environment.
"We had the intro riff for a few months and shelved it and revisited it before hitting the studio. The rest of the song fell into place organically within a rehearsal. We really liked the raw simplicity and the overall direction of the song, so we decided to keep it for the album. The lyrics are loosely based on the plagues in Revelations and coming of the Antichrist. For the video we wanted imagery that exemplified the spirit of the song. It's based on the concept of elements we grew up with watching Nineties music videos and in keeping with that same kind of vibe we did all the filming and editing ourselves."
1823 track listing:
02. Where I've Been
05. Eyes Like Knives
06. Your Burden