Thursday, December 7, 2017

Corrosion of Conformity : " No Cross , No Crown"

Pepper Keenan is not the original vocalist, but sang on their first full blown metal album "Blind" . It Open with a bigger sound than they had on "Blind" which lets be fair, has to be the album we weight this against. They do have more of a Metallica sound now. "Cast the First Stone" brings this to a more aggressive rock place, with blues tinged guitar solos. It's the almost Led Zeppelin like groove to "Wolf Named Corpse" that really puts this song above the first two. I can hear this appealing to fans of Clutch. The vocals are less forceful but more soulful.  "Little Man" has more of a "Mississippi Queen" like boogie to it. There is more metal and less rock n roll to "Forgive Me". I like the lower vocal in the breakdown, everything might make you bob your head but is pretty straight forward.

"Nothing Left To Say" is a blues power ballad that goes where most power ballads go, except when they power up there is more of a swinging groove to it. "Old Disaster" has a "Sad But True" stomp to it , but is more blues based. "E.L.M" is more of what you might expect from these guys in their more metallic form. It has a post- Sabbath lumber to it. There is a little more grit to Keenan's baritone on this one. The title track opens with a darker and more brooding tone. The choir of layered vocals is a little much, but the other part is cool, however it doesn't really go anywhere. There is another fuzzy blues shuffle to "A Quest to Believe" making it clear that this is much more of a stoner rock album than what I previously remember them doing though 'Wiseblood" might be the last album I heard. There is some great guitar playing on this song. I am not one to really key in on guitar solos, so they are tasteful and melodic here.

They close the album with a cover of Queen's "Son and Daughter". They do an excellent job. Queen's original recording of this had a lot of balls to it so I would not say C.O.C's version is any heavier. Overall all I think this album exceeded my expectations. I'll give it a 9. "Blind" would probably get a 10 so that might put things in perspective when it comes to your expectations going into this album. Still it's pretty solid.

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