Down

Eric Wagner – In the Lonely Light of Mourning Review

Eric Wagner – In the Lonely Light of Mourning Review

“I truly hate posthumously released albums. Whether they ultimately end up good or depressingly bad, there’s always so much inherent sadness hanging over the final product making it impossible to avoid the whole “music from the grave” effect. When the deceased in question is Eric Wagner, long-time vocalist of legendary doom act Trouble, it cuts extra deep. Still, it’s hard to deny that the grim context only enhances the kind of downtrodden music the man is famous for. In the Lonely Light of Mourning, Mr. Wagner’s second solo outing, plays almost like a goodbye to fans of the man’s 40-plus years in the metalverse.” At the end of my daze.

Crowbar – Zero and Below Review

Crowbar – Zero and Below Review

“For over 30 years, Louisiana’s own Crowbar have been an institution, with guitarist/vocalist/main man Kirk Windstein helping redefine how downtrodden doom can be, and creating a pathway for future sludge worshippers to follow in his sizeable footsteps. During those years and eleven albums, Windstein and his crew of (forlorn) merry men provided a wealth of classics, with the likes of “All I Had (I Gave),” “Time Heals Nothing,” and “Planets Collide” (among a slew of others) laying the groundwork for many purges and cathartic sludgery. That said, with the exception of an occasional curveball, you pretty much know what to expect from Crowbar at this point.” Welcome to the Iron Bar.

Black Swamp Water – Awakening Review

Black Swamp Water – Awakening Review

“I grabbed this promo from the rattlesnake and scorpion-infested bin at AMG‘s Southwest office because I thought it was thrash. See, I’ve been on a thrash kick lately and I had no qualms grabbing another thrash release to review. The band name didn’t exactly strike me as a band that played thrash. But, who am I to judge? Maybe they’re swampy thrashers from the South, like Pantera and Exhorder. But, this is no thrash band. Everything I know about life is a lie.” Swamp romps.

Neker – Slower Review

Neker – Slower Review

“Hailing from Italy, Neker is the brainchild of… Wait a second. Neker? That’s… You’re sure that’s what you want to go with? Okay, so if any of you want to recommend this band to any friends or family, say it slowly and enunciate clearly. Maybe over-pronounce the K a little, just for safety’s sake. Neker is the brainchild of vocalist/bassist Nicola Amadori, with help from Daniele Alessi on drums and Alessandro Eusebi on guitars. The rest is all Amadori, and his passions lie with the roots of southern metal and sludge, speaking loftily of such renowned acts as Down, Pantera, Crowbar and Melvins.” Let’s get Neker!

Motorjesus – Hellbreaker Review

Motorjesus – Hellbreaker Review

“Windshield time also gives me the chance to re-explore my favorite albums. I rarely listen to new promos on the road. This time is dedicated to albums from the Road Gods. Give me something bluesy, something rocking, something upbeat, something I can blare with windows down and my foot inching closer to the floor. Give me something I can scream at the top of my lungs and shift gears to. The simpler, the better. The groovier, the sweeter.” Jesus repossessed your hot rod.

Eyehategod – A History of Nomadic Behavior Review

Eyehategod – A History of Nomadic Behavior Review

“Legendary sludge metallers Eyehategod is another high profile and revered NOLA band from the wrong side of the tracks, carving out a punishing career of ugly, hateful, feedback drenched sludge, including genre classics, Take as Needed for Pain and Dopesick. Built upon foundations of immense hardship, personal pain, resilience, and rocky turbulence, particularly those of troubled frontman Mike IX Williams, Eyehategod returned with a self-titled comeback album in 2014, their first LP since 2000’s Confederacy of Ruined Lives. It was a solid return, staying true to the band’s gnarled roots. The passage of time and age shall not weary Eyehategod.” Transient ugliness.

Yer Metal is Olde: Corrosion of Conformity – Blind

Yer Metal is Olde: Corrosion of Conformity – Blind

BlindCorrosion of Conformity‘s third album, was an odd duckling for various reasons when it dropped in 1991. It remains the only album to not feature longtime bassist/vocalist Mike Dean in any capacity, but also the only album to feature his replacements, vocalist Karl Agell and bassist Phil Swisher. It also debuted guitarist/vocalist Pepper Keenan, who only sang lead on the album’s hit single, “Vote With a Bullet.” Above all else, Blind saw the band at a crossroads of sorts, with one foot planted in the band’s seminal punk/hardcore history, while planting the other foot into Sabbath-drenched doom/sludge territory. The end result captured lightning in a bottle and today, Blind joins the ranks of the Hallowed and the Olde.” Blind but farseeing.

Yer Metal is Olde: DOWN – NOLA

Yer Metal is Olde: DOWN – NOLA

“Supergroups. That exciting moment when you learn that members of two or more bands you love are coming together to create … well, if we’re honest with ourselves, usually disappointment. It’s rare that supergroups come close to fulfilling that promise and that’s probably because they can’t. That’s not their fault – expectations are always sky high as a new group coalesces but different fans want different aspects of their favorites to be front and center in the new entity. A rare example, however, of a supergroup not just living up to the hype but downright crushing – at least for this fan – is DOWN.” OLDEA

False Gods – No Symmetry… Only Disillusion Review

False Gods – No Symmetry… Only Disillusion Review

“I’m the biggest Eyehategod fan I know, and sludge gets a bad rap. I get it: much like drone, if you just amp up the distortion to an 11/10 and know how to abuse the blues scale, you’ve got it made. Of course, there’s more nuance, like the need for facial hair, flannel, intoxicating substances, a shotgun, and some dark woods in the Deep South, but that’s just pedantic. My point is, you wouldn’t expect Crowbar-esque sludge from some dudes in New York, New York.” Empire expanding.