(Wil Cifer reviews the new album by Neurosis.)
The pioneers of sludge metal are back, and ironically by some of today’s standards Neurosis are no longer a metal band. This is not to say the album is not heavy. Heavy just comes in different colors.
It doesn’t take long for the band to make use of this dynamic, as it happens midway into the first song “Bending Light” when the gruff vocals kick in. They spend the first half of the song wandering around a dark and trippy landscape. This is fine with me. Neurosis had gone too far in Pink Floyd’s direction back on Honor Found in Decay, almost to the point that I thought certain portions sounded like they were from Obscured By Clouds. I am glad to hear more sonic menace infiltrated back into their sound.
I can accept that this is not going to be Souls at Zero or Through Sliver and Blood. If that is what you are looking for going into this, it’s time to face the fact they have moved on from there. The direction this album finds them on is darker and feels to me more true to who they are as a band.