The mighty COC have returned.
In the past few years the band returned to the musical landscape by reforming their original and much beloved lineup. That is the lineup that wrote the much lauded classic Animosity. Records under such pretenses could go a few ways. Will the band return playing a rehashed version of old songs? Will they reach far beyond their grasp and create something boring and trite just to prove they have the skills to do so?
Well with the return of Mike Dean the band not only stay true to the Animosity style crossover that they made their name on but, they also manage to grow beyond that taking tricks learned by the other COC lineup and incorporating them into the songs.
Needless to say what the band do best is play a forward but intelligent style of crossover metal. The best possible example of this would be alum opener "Psychic Vampire". The song rages straight through while still managing to contain hooks and riffs for days. The return of Dean yields some great results throughout. The heavier bass forward sound galvanizes the rhythm section completely and makes the band sound just as heavy without relying solely on slowing down. That is not to say the band go fast the whole time. The concentration on speed and skill makes the slow parts sound huge, powerful and, at times, down right ominous.
The production is clear as day letting the rhythm section shine while still leaving more than enough room for the guitar and vocals to fly while remaining smooth within the songs. Everything feels complete within the mix nothing feels out of place or too loud.
The band have reformed and the time apart seems to have done wonders. At no point throughout the record does it seem that the band have forgotten what they are best at. Noted, there are bits that are different that before but the time apart has only seemed to make them more interested in cementing their legacy.
With that said the legacy remains intact.
8.2 / 10
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