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Dopesick (Reissue)

Eyehategod

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Album Review

Dopesick may be Eyehategod's most painful, strung-out album, and considering this band's standards in that department, that is really saying something. This tormented feeling is evident from the jarring screams that open the album to the broken bottle noises that punctuate the closer, "Anxiety Hangover." "Ruptured Heart Theory" is the one track that shows the band at its most distraught, with its feedback-spewing guitars, crashing cymbals, anguished vocals, and absolutely crawling tempo. The rest of the album is actually somewhat diverse, at least musically if not in terms of mood. "Dixie Whiskey" has a monstrous main riff that sounds like a swamp-bred Black Sabbath; "Dogs Holy Life" and the tricky, Melvins-like "Non Conductive Negative Reasoning" both feature inventive, ear-grabbing guitar parts before ending abruptly; and "Peace Thru War (Thru Peace and War)" and "Lack of All Most Everything" alternate uptempo hardcore punk sections with slowed-down grooves to excellent effect. Produced by Billy Anderson — who has also turned the knobs for the Melvins, Sleep, and Neurosis — Dopesick is denser and heavier than Eyehategod's previous records, with the drums more upfront in the mix and the guitars sounding especially thick. The album comes close to crumpling under its own weight at several points, but just as that seems to happen, guitarists Jimmy Bower and Brian Patton manage to pull out that one more massive doom riff that keeps things afloat. Dopesick is an exhausting, challenging listen, but it is also very arguably Eyehategod's most musically accomplished and well-rounded statement. [This edition of the album features three bonus tracks.]

Customer Reviews

Visceral

This is still my favorite EHG release. Even though they've had better songs here and there, this one stands out as being more intense, dark, miserable and claustrophobic--and hence, cathartic and powerful. It reminds me of listening to Black Flag's "Damaged" in many ways, like a relentless headache, dry heaves, and despair. Sure, this describes my early twenties, and perhaps that's why I can still get into this album. There's no doubt something extra in this recording; Williams growl is somehow more twisted and desolate--and I find it extremely effective, despite the complete lack of intelligible lyrics. The end of Zero Nowhere still gives me chills, and I have no idea why. But that's specifically what sets this album apart from other sludge/metal/punk or whatever. It's coming from somewhere real and dark. If you like or can find release in that kind of stuff, then this album is amazing.

Biography

Formed: 1988

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The misanthropic sludge metal outfit Eyehategod was formed in New Orleans in 1988, and became an important part of a Southern sludgecore scene that included bands like Crowbar and Down, all of whom were heavily influenced by Black Sabbath, Black Flag, and the Melvins. Eyehategod was the brainchild of guitarist Jimmy Bower and drummer Joe LaCaze; the two recruited vocalist Michael D. Williams, lead guitarist Brian Patton, and bassist Steve Dale, and debuted in 1992 with the album In the Name of Suffering....
Full Bio
Dopesick (Reissue), Eyehategod
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