The Lord Weird Slough Feg – New Organon (2019)

It has been a dog’s age since I’ve heard anything from The Lord Weird Slough Feg. Now I know that they just call themselves Slough Feg these days, but I will never stop calling them The Lord Weird Slough Feg.

“Headhunter” serves as a wonderful opener, with its traditional Native American folk influence. The Lord Weird Slough Feg’s melody section has already been notable, packed with a production value that sounds both crisp and analogue, which makes sense as these guys are strong believers in the power of analogue music over digital processing and I have a lot of respect for that. The amount of brilliant guitar solos on this disc are also staggering, there’s no doubt about that. I found myself jamming right along for the entire forty minutes and that’s something that I can seldom say about bands these days. The record as a whole mixes terrific bouts of prog with bountiful melodies, offering the very package that The Lord Weird Slough Feg fans remember them for. If you were a little confused by Digital Revolution, then this is definitely going to remedy that confusion for you in what I can honestly consider to be one of the band’s best efforts since Atavism. In other words, if you can’t find something to like on New Organon, then the band’s unique blend of folk music and prog metal is simply not for you. Mike Scalzi also sounds especially potent here, as if he never aged several years since the recording of their last effort. It’s been a good six years and I was taken by surprise upon learning that this album was even a thing and I raised the bar so high that it threatened to came off the poles. Thankfully, my unrealistic expectations were not just met, but passed by nearly every one of these cuts, offering a record that is as melodically brilliant as it is forward-thinking. The band’s lyrics always come dripping with a kind of uncommon intelligence that the mainstream media sure wouldn’t be caught dead trying to market in this day and age. God forbid, people put their phones down and start thinking for themselves. If you’ve read any of frontman and college philosophy professor Mike Scalzi’s short stories then you’re already aware of the man being quite the genius. We’re certainly thankful to have him in the world of heavy metal, as we could use a little bit of academia with the way the world has changed to introduce what Scalzi keeps noting as “sophistry” on the band’s title track. Most of us have quite literally lost our minds, myself possibly included in that number; but I’m not letting go of my craziness until everyone else is able to let go of theirs. I’m almost wondering if the apes of which we are a genetic ancestor are better behaved.

Honestly folks, I could listen to this album a dozen times over as it is a remarkable collection of music, atmosphere and intelligence, but I’m going to save that opportunity for you the listener to sit down and enjoy; and rest assured – you will. The only problem I had with the disc was “Uncanny” which sort of rubbed me a bit wrong in the vocal performance, it felt a little off. Perhaps that one wasn’t quite fleshed out enough yet. Even so, it’s a tiny nitpick and I doubt it will hinder the amount of joy and excitement that you will experience with New Organon. The disc is an incredible effort from an incredible band.

(10 Tracks, 37:00)

9.5/10

9.5

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