‘Eye of Earth’
(Released: 9 March 2015)
From the dreary region of England called the Black Country come Opium Lord – six red-eyed and haggard men lumbering under the weight of their woe. The avant-sludge that they carry wearily between them is bitter, raw and grim.
Following a highly-praised EP in 2013, their debut album offers a mere seven songs – one for each member of the band and an extra for luck – and each of these tracks is a short, sharp sonic assault. Opium Lord’s slow, angular riffs are crusted with dry blood, the rasping vocals drench you with misery, while creeping sound effects and experimental work bounce off the walls with rabid insanity.
The band’s molten aggression is poured into original moulds – each new song is a new experience that has evidently been finely crafted and carved, all while sitting within a distinctive and hard-hitting mix of math and fierce sludge. If anything, Opium Lord could let rip a bit more; free themselves of their ‘math’ leash and explode into unfettered fury. That said, the British band puts together some cleverly controlled and unique arrangements.
Listening to ‘Eye Of Earth’ is like having a cheese grater rubbed slowly over your face – agonising and delightfully cruel. This album is a solid and intriguing debut from a miserably debauched band with a lot to say – and the skill to say it with a fresh voice.