Sleep – Dopesmoker – Album Review
|Fans Of:||Om, Electric Wizard, Weedeater|
The caravan is on its way to who knows where with their dragon-headed ships of the desert. The soundtrack to their journey? The re-issue of Sleep’s classic, Dopesmoker!
Last year, Sleep’s vocalist and bassist Al Cisneros got in touch with the fine gentlemen at Southern Lord to talk about the possibility of releasing a deluxe version of Dopesmoker. And guess what, here it is! The rerelease comes complete with new cover artwork, once again created by Sleep’s long-time artist Arik Roper.
The album’s title track is 63 minutes long and offers the perfect balance between drums, guitar, bass and vocals – nothing’s too dominant or too weak. There are heavy parts as well as laid-back parts without drums or vocals. Above all, there’s absolutely no point where you’d think ‘I just can’t listen to this anymore, it’s too much/too boring/too heavy/too stoner’ or whatever. You barely notice that you’ve been listening to a single song for more than an hour. Brilliant!
The second song on the reissue is an unreleased live recording of “Holy Mountain” from their gig at San Francisco’s I-Beam in 1994. I was a bit sceptical at first. We all know that live recordings are either brilliant or awful – there’s no middle ground. And remember we’re talking about a recording from 1994 here.
But Brad Boatright, responsible for the remastering, did a great job! Yes, the second song, isn’t as powerful and massive as the first one, but I wouldn’t have expected such a good quality.
Smash your piggy bank or sell your car and get this album! It’s worth every penny!
2. Holy Mountain