Sound — 8
A warning to all fans of watered-down pop-metal: there is nothing catchy on this entire album. What it lacks in mainstreamness, however, it makes up for in heaviness. HOF don't need hooks, the music is so intense and brutal that you won't be able to press stop. This record is an aural steamroller, pounding it's way into your subconscience and never letting you get away. While this album is insane, it really isn't anthing that they haven't done before. It features the same thunderous drums, courtesy of master skinsman Des Kensel, gutteral bass and pummeling riffs that fans have come to expect from the Oakland trio. The only thing that I have heard people complain about is the length of the songs. Seven of the eleven tracks are upwards of five minutes, but that is a common thing in stoner metal.
Lyrics — 9
The lyrics on this album are about the same caliber as the last record. Fantasy, demons, religion, and views on the current state of the world are just some of the many topics covered. Though these aren't anything new, Matt Pike and the gang have managed to write about these things in a way that is new and fresh. The lyrics also go along perfectly with the music. As far as epicness goes, they can't be beat. Think what it would be like if J.R.R. Tolkien did a bunch of meth and wrote some sick poems. And as far as the singing goes, you can tell that Pike has come a long way since HOF's creation. While he still uses his signature sandpaper-scraping-across-cement growl more than anything, he also employs the help of some more melodic lines here and there.
Overall Impression — 9
This record is not like anything any other artist has recorded before. But, like I said, it is one of those prototypical HOF records that their fans have come to expect. The songs that left the biggest impression on me were the title track and the massive "Headhunter". While "Headhunter" clocks in at a mere 1:24 and features only a single instrument, it is easily the most moving song on the whole album. Be sure not to listen to this track while there is a spear in the room, as it may provoke you to impale someone. Overall, I personally could not find anything about this album that I didn't like, but like I said, some people have a problem with long songs. If I were to lose this album, I would certainly buy another copy. Happy listening everyone, hope this helped. Hesh hard!