High on Fire "De Vermis Mysteriis" Review — 5 out of 5 stars
Mon, 09 Apr 2012 09:00:34
From the first punchy drum roll of "Serums of Liao" until the final howl of "Warhorn", High on Fire's sixth album, De Vermis Mysteriis, is a metallic journey of divine and deadly proportions.
The Northern California trio has architected its most dynamic yet devastating offering yet. De Vermis Mysteriis stands based upon a larger concept with literary implications, evincing the brilliance at the heart of singer and guitarist Matt Pike's lyrical musings. As a complete whole, the record follows a distinct path with enough rage and redemption to satiate fans of Slayer and Stephen King alike. The opening salvo, "Serums of Liao", stomps from intricate thrashing into a big drum-fueled groove by skinsman Des Kensel. Meanwhile, "Bloody Knuckles" kicks off with one of the most infectious riffs that Pike's ever laid to tape before devolving into a demonic charge led by his screams. "Fertile Green" hails the leaf properly via more tribal drumming and Jeff Matz's distinct bass rumble.
The near seven-minute "Madness of an Architect" stands out as a dark juggernaut subsumed in Pike's graveyard poetry and raw six-string prowess. "Samsara" proves to be an elegiac marvel reminiscent of Metallica's "Orion" but with a foreboding panache. Along the same sentiment, "King Of Days" sounds like it could be the detuned score of Game of Thrones. Everything snaps into one final explosion during "Warhorn".
De Vermis Mysteriis is everything a great metal record should be. The mythos surrounding it is just as powerful as the songs at the heart of it. Get ready for one hell of a ride.
Have you heard De Vermis Mysteriis yet?