A List of Doom Rockers Batillus' Favorite Albums

The Brooklyn quartet Batillus take their name from a class of 1970s supertankers that are among the biggest ships ever built, and the name fits—the band's self-titled debut EP is three tracks of long, slow, and super-heavy doom metal. Here's what they've been listening to in preparation for their show at Pilot Light.

Dr. John

Gris Gris (Atco, 1968)

Supposedly this is a classic record, but I heard it for the first time just a few weeks ago. Why it stays on the turntable: I'm obsessed with the loose, dark, and mysterious atmosphere of the thing, which is created mostly with layers of percussion, simple bass lines, and minor-key group chants. It could almost be a set of hymns for some secret ritual ceremony that you might stumble upon in the middle of a swamp at night. (Guitarist Greg Peterson)

Wovenhand

Mosaic (Sounds Familyre, 2006)

I love the atmosphere of this album—it's an acoustic record but there are a lot of dark overtones. It brings me back to when I was very young, spending time in the woods, the smell of smoke from burning wood, the light through the trees at dusk, the cold air closing in around you. (Keyboards/vocalist Fade Kainer)

U.S. Christmas

Run Thick in the Night (Neurot, 2010)

Well, I was going to pick 16 Horsepower's Secret South, but Fade beat me to the punch with Wovenhand and I don't want David Eugene Edwards to be over-represented here. So I'll go with a newer record that's been in heavy rotation for me. This record's vast, expansive, dark Americana vibe really speaks to me, and I absolutely love this band's unique, wailing vocal approach. (Percussionist Geoff Summers)

Kraftwerk

Der Katalog (Kling Klang/EMI, 2009)

I've been really getting into the remastered Kraftwerk albums; the songs have really taken on a different character, and I think it's almost always an improvement, or at least a good innovation. The music has much more depth than people give it credit for, and I think the remasters have brought that out. (Bassist Willi Stabenau)

Ministry

"Filth Pig," from Filth Pig (Warner Bros., 1996)

Filth Pig is Ministry's best album, and since we're gonna be covering it, I've been listening to this song a lot. What always strikes me is its weird industrial/country sound combined with Al Jourgensen's gnarled and drifting junkie vocals over the top. Like Kraftwerk's stuff, this song really makes a lot out of relatively few elements. (W.S.)

Duke Ellington and John Coltrane

Duke Ellington & John Coltrane (Impulse!, 1963)

Peterson recommended this to me a few months ago, and I keep coming back to it. The playing is unassuming, subtle, and expressive, and the melodies get stuck in your head instantly. I don't know that much about jazz, so I love that this record is both accessible and deep. (W.S.)