Review from -Born In Blood - www.borninblood.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=55&t=6042
The album starts gently and builds gaining intensity and heaviness as it goes. The tracks blend into one another seamlessly and each builds on what has gone before. They form an album in the truest sense of the word rather than a collection of tracks. May I use an analogy? It’s a bit like an 18 wheeler parked on a long, long hill, one that would take 40 minutes to travel. You take the handbrake off, and off you roll. It’s not a steep hill, it does have its deeper and shallower moments, and as the road levels during these passages, it’s as if you have would the windows down and all you can hear is the wind and the sound of the tyres rolling on the gravel road. The volume builds and beats a rhythm, repetitive, rhythmic, Industrial, like the sound of pile drivers at work behind a distant steel plant. The road would appear to go on forever as sense of time is lost. And deep within that softness, is hardness, a heaviness that is so genuine it burdens the soul. It’s not the sort of heaviness you get through impact. There are no grinding guitars at work here, it’s achieved by steadily increasing the pressure of the air around you. Distant screaming, drones, solitary notes fading in and out again, humming, like a mantra, singing OM to pay homage to the industrialised nation. Downer, Stoner, Sludge Doom, Ambient, Rock. Getting back to that truck analogy, it’s been rolling a good 15 minutes now and you are not aware of the speed it has picked up (speed be analogous to intensity), Sludge guitars have been hitting single chords for minutes now and you’ve just noticed them. This is the art of ambience, to hear without listening. Riffs that shimmer in the desert heat haze (did I mention this road is in the desert?). Blistering hot metal to touch, so you turn you imaginary fan on, only to find it’s broken and it really is damn hot and claustrophobic in here. But around track 7 the air conditioning suddenly starts working again, but it’s making some weird noises. The temperature drops and keeps ..ping despite your efforts to turn the damn thing off. Ice starts to form on the windows. Images of the road ahead go berserk, the sky turns orange, the road turns upside down. The steering wheel turns into a giant python and tries to swallow. And as you grapple with this monster with you hands around its neck and the truck thunders down that hill, you say to yourself “Yep, that damn guy with the long hair, Afghan coat, bandana and beads at that transport cafe, has slipped a tab of LSD in my coffee, and all because I told him my last album was called ‘Hippie Killer’. After what seems like two days, things calm down again and panic is replaced by paranoia. New will never be so relieved to hear the familiar and comforting sounds of the heavy metal sludge that breaks through this veil of terror. Praise the Bong! This album is a journey and it may take a while for you to get that. It’s no good expecting the quick gratification of a chorus and verse, or putting this on without experiencing the whole thing. It is quite simply a wonderful album. I think it’s a masterpiece.
released 28 April 2008