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Corrosion of Conformity – “No Cross No Crown” (Nuclear Blast)

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No Cross No Crown is Corrosion of Conformity’s tenth studio album, and the first with singer/guitarist Pepper Keenan since 2005’s In The Arms of God, and man is it good to see and hear Pepper back doing his thing.  I’ll admit that C.O.C. is one of my all time favorite bands, whether it be their hardcore punk albums to the southern “sludge” metal titans they are today.  No Cross No Crown has all the elements that one would expect from today’s C.O.C. lineup, and it’s just too bad this album wasn’t released until after Xmas because this is a gift for us all.  Aside from the cover art, which could’ve been so much better, this album kicks ass from start to finish.
C.O.C fires on all cylinders on this album.  No Cross No Crown, has all the elements, that made both Deliverance and Wiseblood kickass albums. I mean how can you go wrong with the trio of Woody Weatherman (guitar), Reed Mullin (drums) and Mike Dean (bass)?  These guys go together like a 12 pack and a couple of joints on a Friday night.   As great as that trio is, with Pepper Keenan (guitar/vocals), it just takes C.O.C. to a whole different level.
The very first song you hear is the acoustic interlude “Novus Deus”, which roughly translates to new god. The song/album begins with someone taking a deep breathe, which is fitting, because this album doesn’t let up beginning to end.  With the exception of a couple signature C.O.C. acoustic breaks, this is an album that takes you through what C.O.C does best. Riffs. Riffs and more riffs. Pepper’s vocals sound great on this album, and so does the entire band.
 Each song has a direction and doesn’t fuck around  Except for the four acoustic interludes, this album is “southern” metal at its finest.  It really sounds like they met up on a hot southern day and just started jamming..But in a really good way. “The Luddite” is a great album opener with aggressive vocals which leads into the albums first single “Cast the First Stone”.  This is a great song that incorporates everything C.O.C. does best.  Riffs, vocals, drum ,bass.  You want it? Well you’ve got it on this song.
The acoustic break after “Cast the First Stone”. “No Cross” of course is slow, but a different kind of slow.  The kind of slow that sounds like some is taking that long walk to the gallows kind of slow.  Its a good way to showcase the riffs that are about to come your way.  “Wolf Named Crow” just kicks your ass from start to finish. I could list every song, but it would get redundant. Like driving to the gas station. You know where you’re going and why you’re going there, but you need it!  This album is life’s gas .Fill up and press the pedal to the floor! This album is a huge reminder that C.O.C. is back in all their “southern” sludge, doom, heavy, and face punching glory.
01 – “Novus Deus
02 – “The Luddite
03 – “Cast The First Stone
04 – “1. No Cross
05 – “Wolf Named Crow
06 – “Little Man
07 – “Matre’s Diem
08 – “Forgive Me
09 – “Nothing Left To Say
10 – “Sacred Isolation
11 – “Old Disaster
12 – “E.L.M.
13 – “2. No Cross No Crown
14 – “A Quest To Believe (A Call To The Void)
15 – “Son And Daughter


Author: John Adams

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