Down and Out (Into the World)
Heavy metal supergroup Down has dropped yet another bruising release. This time it’s the heavily anticipated sequel to their 2012 album, Down IV: Part One. Currently, the lineup includes Phil Anselmo (Pantera), Pepper Keenan (Corrosion of Conformity), Pat Bruders (Goatwhore) and Jimmy Bowers (Superjoint Ritual, Crowbar). It’s exactly what you would expect from this group: heavy, groove-oriented metal that is not afraid to slow it down and make you bang your head.
From the opening bell, “Steepie” lets you know what you’re in for. Anselmo belts out one long low note while the band sludges out a monster riff. It turns into a real riff-fest about 30 seconds later. Anselmo is in classic form here; it’s very much his Pantera-esque delivery that makes this song hit. “We Knew Him Well” is, arguably, the toughest riff of the year and certainly the toughest on Down IV: Part Two. This thing is a head banging fest. Pepper is on his game for this record. The guitar structures are top notch and will break out of your speakers.
“Hogshead/Dogshed” best defines Down — that southern style bluesy riff, delivered with Anselmo’s bellowing vocals. The whole thing grooves in the heaviest way possible. The solos on this song are just filthy. It’s clearly a southern blues metal fest on this track. Overall, Down IV: Part Two is pretty much what you would expect from Down, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. This album grooves in all the right ways and is a solid release from these NOLA boys. Good groove metal that is hard to ignore. It’s what they’re selling, and we should all be buying.