10/10 – Reviewed by Steve Earles
This is an album that has as much in common with black metal as it does with doom metal. It is an album that has as much in common with the raw fury and anger of Discharge and Amebix as it does Pentagram or Black Sabbath.
‘Time To Die’ is as primitive and raw as you can get while still making actual music, still writing actual songs. This is much with no agenda, no more so that a storm or a mountain- it exists and does not apologise for doing so. It is music with no ‘cool haircut’, no elitist clique to belong to, no full sleeve tattoos, no sense of imaginary cool, it belongs to no ‘cult.’ No…it is what all good music should be, but so seldom is…
Electric Wizard are 100% Electric Wizard…no more…no less.
Jus Oborn once said a very true thing: that most bands emulate what has come before, but that Electric Wizard has created their own sound. This is a very true. You cannot review Electric Wizard in term of ‘this track sounds like band x, y, or z.’
If Electric Wizard sounds like anything, they sound like the howl of the void we have created to live in, the violent cesspit we have turned the world in. We are the architects of our own agony and ‘Time To Die’ is the soundtrack. This is the sound of alienation.
Riffs pummel like some hellish Satanic mills, drums pound with a ritual intensity, the vocals themselves are more like instruments, words as riffs, shamanistic odes to alienation.
And what are alienated from in the 21st century? We’re alienated from nature. We live in one concrete coffin, travel in a metal one, to work in another concrete coffin, return to the same concrete coffin to stare like sheep at a flickering screen: anything to avoid reality.
We’re alienated from hope and sense. The media keeps us in self-induced slavery of desire for material items that will enslave us in debt and never make us happy. ‘Smart Phone’, now there’s an oxymoron! Think on this, the expensive car people put themselves into massive debt for will one day end up on a scrapyard, a rusting testament to stupidity and greed.
We’re alienated from common sense, we no longer listen to ourselves, and emulate everything everyone else does: are you yourself or have you morphed into your peer group for fear of not fitting in?
And ultimately, we’re alienated from each other, by the very technology that is supposed to bring us together. Modern technology has enabled people to isolate themselves in a self-made prison of their own mind, afraid of the world and the people who live in it.
We’ve become a global ‘alien-nation’, and ‘Time To Die’ is the soundtrack to that alienation, for as we lose our humanity, we become an ‘alien-nation’ unto ourselves.
Electric Wizard is the band who’ve stared too long into the abyss and put what they saw to music. Listen to the sound of that void in awe.