by Robert Bell
It's so good — and sadly, so rare — when a legendary band gets back together and actually creates something vital. I can think of a few instances, but for every Wire (specifically the '00s reunion) or Mission of Burma, it seems that there are a dozen that are mediocre (The Police), pointless (Spice Girls, The Sex Pistols) or so obviously just about the money that it's kind of a bummer (Pixies).
I'm happy to report that the mighty Corrosion of Conformity can be placed firmly among the few truly worthwhile reunions of recent years. The band's new self-titled album marks the return of the original founding trio of Mike Dean, Reed Mullin and Woody Weatherman. The band hasn't abandoned the Southern metal groove of the 1990s Pepper Keenan-era lineup, but they've brought back the bruisin' 'n contusin' thrash chops of their '80s crossover classics "Animosity" and "Technocracy."
Check out "El Lamento de Las Cabras," an instrumental that sounds like Earth if they decided to focus and rein in the wandering tendencies just a bit. "The Doom" swings between Pentagram-like riff worship and galloping hardcore, while "The Moneychangers" sounds like it could be a criminally neglected B-side from "Deliverance" or "Wiseblood." Rumor has it that Keenan might be returning to COC's ranks, which could be awesome, given how alive and inspired the band sounds now.
Opening acts are the Miami-based doom-pop honchos in Torche, the chorus-happy skull-crushers Valient Thorr and the harsh, epically bleak post-metallers A Storm of Light. This will certainly be — if not the best — then one of the very best metal shows of the year.
After the jump, check out "The Doom" from "Corrosion of Conformity."