Rock For The Ages
When one thinks of Corrosion of Conformity and the no-frills rock legacy theyâ€šÃ„Ã´ve created for themselves, a certain degree of respect demands to be given. Indeed, ever since the band shifted from playing politically-charged hardcore, many turbulent changes in the band’s direction and lineup have followed. COC settled on a steady lineup and straight-laced rock sound in 1994 with Mike Dean (bass), Woody Weatherman (guitar), Pepper Keenan (guitar/vocals) and Reed Mullen (drums). But this new album finds Mullen replaced with Stanton Moore (Galactic). Given their age and truckloads of experience, itâ€šÃ„Ã´s no surprise that COC still know how to put together a progressive and interesting rock album with In The Arms of God.COC are first and foremost a traditional rock band, one who has sewn their seeds deep within the all mighty â€šÃ„Ã²rock riff.â€šÃ„Ã´ One might even consider them the quintessential â€šÃ„Ã²rock band.â€šÃ„Ã´ No, thereâ€šÃ„Ã´s nothing that special about Keenan’s deep, throaty vocal range, nor are the lyrics very thought provoking. But the catchy, dark and edgy guitar hooks rooted in a blues-like musical backdrop more than makes up for anything else the band may lack. Songs like â€šÃ„ÃºStonebreakerâ€šÃ„Ã¹ and â€šÃ„ÃºItâ€šÃ„Ã´s That Wayâ€šÃ„Ã¹ let the band flex their impressive guitar prowess. Indeed, Keenan and Weatherman have come to be known as masters of the guitar solo, and thankfully In The Arms of God follows suite with a spectacular range of solos that fit snugly into the band’s dirty rock sound.
So it seems it’s true, at least in COCâ€šÃ„Ã´s case, that with age also comes wisdom. And the wisdom bestowed on In The Arms of God is another sweet lesson in good-ole rock music.