High on Fire (U.S.): Snakes for the Divine (E1 Music)“Snakes for the Divine,” “Holy Flames of the Fire Spitter,” “Frost Hammer,” “Fire, Flood & Plague,” and “Ghost Neck” all have an energetic, rocking, (frequent) double-bass drumming and big-heavy 70s iommisque riffing, accompanied by a whiskey-throat kilmisteresque vocal vibe. The overall sound is raucous enough for the metal crowds and traditional enough for the heavy/hard rock people. They have a pretty good groove, hence easy to get into, but also have enough mosh/banging moments.
“Bastard Sumarai,” on the other hand, sounds quite a bit doomier, where the 70s sabbathesque riffs and the slower feel contrast with the tempo of the other songs, for the most part. “The Path” is a short, 80-second interlude.
“How Dark We Pray” is a midtempo rumble, with some active, double-bass drumming in some segments. There’s a nice, melodic guitar solo that complements this piece pretty well. During the solo, you hear the simplicity of the band’s sound: the bass guitar and drums work their magic audibly while the solo is on.
The sum: two songs are a bit more midtempo, one is a very brief track and the rest are uptempo, combining a motorheadish feel/speed/vocals with a 70s sabbathy guitar sound. In general, this is more groove than, say, melody/shredding; more uptempo than doom; more meat/potatoes than flashy musicianship; more old school metal/rock/stoner than really aggressive/fast metal.