Electric Wizard – Time To Die
Release Date: Sepetmeber 30, 2014
Hello all my Droog’s, it’s been a while since my last confession and my last review. So I figured now was as good a time as any to bare my sins and my opinion to all of you. Also, I have a big enough lull in my schedule to accommodate filling my empty mind space with new tunage being released into the airwaves. Also, it is my most dead time of year for work. Speaking of dead, let us examine the latest musical offerings from Electric Wizard – Time to Die. This is their eighth studio album in a career spanning many years and many player changes. It looks like they finally got the combination right, with the latest incarnation of : Jus Oborn – lead vocals and guitars, Liz Buckingham – guitars, Clayton Burgess – bass, and Simon Poole – drums. Though original member Mark Greening returns to deliver the actual skin and stick work for the record, which he has not done since 2002’s brilliant, Let Us Prey.
As you all may have guessed I don’t get to choose what I am to review, and it’s usually a big ol crap shoot roll of the dice for me. I gotta tell you, thank goodness Halloween is approaching because the tricks and treats are all in this album. Nine tracks and packed with ooey, gooey goodness of trippy occultist music. It satisfies my deep dark soul better than that “certain” candy bar with nougat and peanuts.
Now, my ears are new to Electric Wizard’s stoner doom vibe so I visited some of their earlier works which I also find quite delectable. Namely off their 1995 self-titled debut album, and the sound of “Black Butterfly” a truly fascinating piece of work, and of course “Funeralopolis” off 2000 classic, Dopethrone. This one is an example of a more hard-driving sound.
The lead track, “Incense for the Damned”, starts it all off with something of a fluid water sound but then quickly transforms into a magical journey which segues into “Time to Die” with its symphonic undercurrents as we drift on down the river with the ferryman Charon leading the way. These first two tracks account for the record’s first 20 minutes. Color me hypnotized.
“I Am Nothing” arrives like a droning dirge, grinding down the spine. Burgess’ rumbling bass pulverizes marrow here, and the procession of death continues to plod along. And let there be no question, death is the current that threads throughout this record.
My soul was elated as I listened to “Funeral of your Mind” I love the title and the tune tickled my fancy (which has not been tickled in quite some time, not from lack of trying. Reminds me I have not confessed any of my sins as I said I was going to. Maybe I’ll just keep them locked away in the deepest recesses of my mind). I digress, the song is lively for a funeral so it’s more like an Irish wake and had me craving a shot of whiskey.
And don’t forget to (bring out your dead, nudge nudge, wink wink) to listen to the track, “We Love the Dead”. (Unless you’re more of a DeadHead than a Monty Python fan). In that case, bring out that “fatty” and a twirl around in your living room.
Fuzz infused tendrils of despair wrap around the ears for “Lucifer’s Slaves”, which plods onward dragging its weighted heft in tow; soul crushed, hope stripped like so much useless flesh.
Finally we reach the scary organ music of “Saturn Dethroned”, the album’s broody outro which sounds like the soundtrack to a B-list 70’s horror flick.
In fact, I was just wishing the other night as I watched a documentary on Black Sabbath that someone could give me those similar twinges of “tingle” down my spine. Looks like my ghoulish prayers were answered in the form of Electric Wizard. Time to Die is a raw, earthy, and ritualistically mind altering tribute to death. I give this album a solid 8 out of 10 caskets. Trust me, it wont get buried in your CD collection…for long.