High On Fire – Blessed Black Wings

Release Date: February 1, 2005
Reviewed by Jeff Brinn

Heavy is such a huge understatement to say the least when describing the newest release from High on Fire. From the first pulverizing riffs High on Fire take their ominous sounds to a whole new level and break down one of the years heaviest releases yet.

It wasn’t less then a year ago I lay witness finally to the incredible power that is High on Fire. What I remember so much (to not much surprise} is how hated they were by this newer generation of metal induced youth that plagued their opening slot concert appearance. Playing to a barrage of middle fingers and air born beer cups further proved that High On Fire are not for the fashion conscious metal heads and that makes them all the better in my book. “Blessed Black Wings” has garnished a cleaner sound with knob twister Steve Albini behind the board which possibly could open a lot more doors for these skull crushing warriors. Not to worry metal merchants, all the raw unbridled power that High on Fire can muster up is still very intact but somehow Albini has pulled from his bag of tricks a more user friendly band. The wall of sound that High on Fire is respectably known for is still very present but Albini has managed to sift thru the barrage of noise and come clean with some of the heaviest shit possible. On past albums the incredibly intoxicating song writing of Matt Pike some how was lost in production making the wall of noise that is High on Fire a hard listen for many metal fans.

With this most recent release it’s very easy to actually hear all the chord changes and guitar riffs that in the past were so lost in the mix. Not to say that this act has sold out by any means, they have just got a little better with age. Remember High on Fire are easily not for the squeamish little mall buying rockers that have infiltrated the metal world but all the same Matt Pike and company keep their faith to the passion of making a damn heavy record, e-nuff said!

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