Electric Wizard are back with a vengeance and they are bringing their style of Doom Metal / Stoner Metal with them. They are hailed as one of the leaders of these subgenres these days, so they have a lot to live up to. Black Masses is Electric Wizard’s seventh full-length album and is the follow up to 2007’s Witchcult Today. Witchcult Today was received fairly well, and I am hoping that Black Masses is received as well. They are not as commercially successful as The Sword, nor are they as influential as Candlemass or Trouble, but they are a solid band nonetheless.
From the first listen, I can tell you that the production of the album was done very well, which is something that they have said that they spent a lot of time on. They still use the vintage analog technique though.
I can also say that Black Masses is going for more of the groove rather than the riff sound that they previously demonstrated. This album has a nice groove to it and if you crank it up, you will groove to the album.
Black Masses also could be one of the more accessible albums in Electric Wizard’s catalog with less experimentation that we might be used to from them, but as accessible as it is, it still does bring that Electric Wizard sound. Vocalist/guitarist Jus Oborn (the only original member) seems to have shown even more development with his vocals.
I can really get into the lead track, Black Mass. That has a nice groove to it. The Nightchild is another song with a massive groove to it. You cannot help but move to this one. Unfortunately, the song does drag on a little and could have been 3 minutes shorter. Other songs like Satyr IX and Scorpio Curse are just hynoptic and pretty awesome.
All in all, this is a solid release, but I have a feeling that this album will get less play time for me and the older stuff will get more.