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Review: Electric Wizard – Black Masses by Jayson
November 23, 2010, 9:27 am
Filed under: Metal, Review | Tags: , ,

We have a policy here of usually not writing about stuff we don’t like. It’s the basic thing your mom told you: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” That’d be the case here, but for the fact that I mentioned being excited for this album every Friday for months.

The release of Black Masses missed me. It was out several weeks ago and I didn’t know until Amazon recommended it to me. I don’t know if it’s a reflection on the quality of the album, but basically no one I follow but Cosmo Lee has said anything about it. My indifference to the world of metal news has me checking stuff only once a week or so.

This isn’t a good album. It’s hard to pin point why, because superficially this is exactly the same album the Wizard have been putting out since the day. Maybe after all that time worshiping at his altar, Count Drugula has sucked all the life out of them. A combination of what sounds like a change in priorities in how this one was recorded and mixed has delivered us something I didn’t think possible: a really boring Electric Wizard album. It sounds terrible, like it was recorded for $300 in someone’s house. I don’t know if that’s supposed to be some kind of attempt to sound ‘raw’ or ‘authentic’ or if it really was made on a shoestring, but it doesn’t work.

Where Electric Wizard used to overwhelm you with a wall of sound so potent it was almost psychotronic, Black Masses hits you with what is basically a wall of mush. They’ve really deadened the low end, to the point where it really sounds like you’re listening to it on a radio with a blown mono speaker. However you can hear tinny cymbals. Really the only good thing here is Liz Buckingham delivering some amazing solos. Otherwise the whole thing is just kinda lifeless, even her best efforts are muted in the mix. I’ve been told by a couple of people that I’ll get into it if I listen to it more, but it’s honestly too boring for me to want to.

– Jayson


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