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Metal as fuck! - 100%

Kneurosis, August 15th, 2008

The reason I'm giving this album a 100 isn't because it's my favorite album in the Universe. I'm giving it a 100 because there's no way in Hell that if you like metal that you're not gonna like this album. I wasn't too impressed with High On Fire up until now. I mean they were okay, but I didn't really see what all the hype was about. Sleep kicked ass and I always found myself wishing that they were still around. (I still do, actually, but that's not the point.) Anyway, I wasn't in a giant hurry to hear their newest release, but I found out that High On Fire finally handed over a record that kicks some serious ass.

The first song, "Fury Whip" launches into some medium-fast riffs that I won't describe as generic. I think "obvious" is a better word. Why hasn't somebody done this already? The song is a welcome throwback to mid-80's thrash metal with Matt Pike's voice rising at times to a jaguar-like howl that put a grin on my face the first few times I heard it. As a matter of fact, I think the whole album had that effect on me. "Waste of Tiamat" offers more of the same.

The title track is probably my favorite, easing up the pace with a grinding, simple guitar riff that follows each beat of the tribal-sounding drums, Pike's growling vocals almost chanting the lyrics. Heavy shit.

"Khanrad's Wall" offers a short accoustic tune that sounds remeniscent of Eastern European folk. Even the pagan metal fans don't have to feel left out.

One song after another, "Death Is This Communion" doesn't fail to deliver the goods if you wanna hear a well rounded metal album that's simultaneously original while paying homage to classic thrash metal. Play it for the whole family. There's something in for everybody.