ALBUM: The Acacia Strain – Coma Witch

Release Date: October 14th, 2014
Label: Rise Records


Purveyors of slow-mo misanthropy and chest beating thuggish stomp, you could be pardoned for believing that a new full-length from The Acacia Strain would be a rather cut and dry affair. With their elephantine escapades in full effect, the Massachusetts quintet deviate rarely from their path of righteous savagery on ‘Coma Witch’, and seem to deliver, quite simply, a concrete slab of appetite sating hostility.

With a haunting monologue from legendary black magician Aleister Crowley raising the curtain on ‘Human Disaster’, we’re immediately enveloped in that signature The Acacia Strain darkness, and as an explosive series of guitar hammer blows deftly sweeps away the cloud, it’s certainly business as usual. So far so reliable, yet as the seething bounce of ‘Cauterizer’ and a surprisingly high-velocity ‘Holy Walls Of The Vatican’ deliver all the black hearted sonic violence as is the band’s bread and butter, some nimble tweaks of the down-tuned blueprint begin to reveal themselves.

It’s perhaps the rhythmic curve-balls of ‘VVorld Demise’, or the flailing lurch of ‘Nailgun’, but it’s with twenty seven minute closing gambit ‘Observer’ where we’re truly witness to something of a revelation. Shifting from riffing giant-ism, spoken word horror, hypnotic drone and beauteous clean sections, this titanic enterprise goes a long way to dispelling any notions of The Acacia Strain refusing to progress.

For all their single minded (and enjoyable) club swinging, these down-tempo poster boys have shown their ability to generate formidable creative waves.

Written by Tony Bliss (@TBliss88)