Review: Goatsnake

““Flowers Of Disease””
(Man’s Ruin Records)

Goatsnake.  Cool name, better music. Their newest offering, “Flower Of Disease” is a excellent  stoner/sludge rock.  Slow but driven, laid back, but damn aggressive,  this is one hell of an album.  The guitars are thick and full, making a heavy top layer that rattles your brain right down to your spine.  Bass work here makes a relentless pulsating rhythm, and accompanies a unique drumming technique that churns the sound like a cement mixer.  There is an unmistakable stamp of heavy Sabbath influences all the way through this disk.  Blues riffs drift up form the mud, accompanied by the occasional use of harmonica and Jew’s harp.  The slow guitar driven breaks are reminiscent of a heavy psychedelic haze found on early Sabbath songs like “Black Sabbath”.  Don’t misunderstand, Goatsnake is defiantly its own band with its own sound, but you can tell this is a band out of a certain place.  Which includes a healthy dose of Southern grease, like Lynyrd Skynyrd.  The highlight of the album is by far the last song, “The River”- an eight minute opus of the slowest, thickest sounds off of “Flower Of Disease”.  It might well be noted as the “light up” point.  The best flexing of music, writing and singing, “The River” brings out the best that Goatsnake has to offer.  It can be summed up with the line “I sink to float along”.  Let “Flower Of Disease” ooze down your ears, you’ll thank me for it later.