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BLACK SHEEP WALL


BLACK SHEEP WALL


"No Matter Where It Ends"

By Dr. Abner Mality


I think it might end right here. I can't see how heavy music can get much more primitive and monolithic than this, unless we start getting records that consist of just feedback and an open E chord for an hour. Yeah, I know the Japanese are already working on that.

Black Sheep Wall is yet another entrant into the avalanche of sludge bands oozing out of just about everywhere. One thing you can't deny upon hearing BSW: they are HEAVY. This stuff is so low-tuned and sludgy, it practically doesn't move at all. Imagine the heaviest sound Ross Robinson got out of Korn back in the early 90's and amplify it by 10, that's the sound of Black Sheep Wall. They are not a nu-metal band in any way, that's just the overwhelming feeling you get from their guitar sound. They put that crushing sound in service of lumbering, simplistic sludge that just pounds and pounds away, beating basic chords into the ground. This kind of approach was pioneered by old Crowbar, Eyehategod and Grief, so you might dig the Wall if those names float your boat. For me, there's a certain point when the blunt force of this music just kind of dissolves into static, making me cry "Enough already!" The roaring bull shouts of singer Trae Malone don't offer much in the way of relief...they are equally monolithic and unyielding.

The nine cuts here yield exactly one hour of bruising sonic torment. There are a few stray bits where a kind of melody slips in and the electronic soundscape "Cognitive Dissonance" is oppressive in a different way, It's just too one-note to excite me, but I sure can't say that "No Matter Where It Ends" is anything but heavy.

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