Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Black Tusk - Set The Dial

Black Tusk Day - Part Deux!

2011's Set The Dial popped up barely a year after Taste The Sin. That always worries me. When a band releases albums frequently, there's a high probability that they're either Azgorh of Drowning The Light or awful. Fans of Black Tusk should hope that the one-year album cycle doesn't become the norm for these Georgian "swamp metallers."

Set The Dial is clearly hurt by this. It doesn't have the mixing goodness of it's predecessor either. I feel like Black Tusk must've been rushed in the studio or something because although most these songs are pretty typical, some feel as though they're rudimentary recordings. Opener "Bring Me Darkness" is a substandard track that I often forget is even on the album. I usually just start it at "Ender of All" because I can actually get into the infectious stoner grooves on that track. "Carved in Stone" is another fun track with some interesting drumming that collapses into a doom-filled wasteland just in time for the title track, "Set the Dial to Your Doom." Sadly the title track is pretty forgettable, as are both of the instrumentals "Brewing The Storm" (the intro) and "Resistor."

The last three tracks on the album are a bit more entertaining. "This Time Is Divine" has some cool harmonics and "Crossroads and Thunder" is catchy hardcore sludge to the bone. Shame the rest of the album wasn't nearly as good as the last few tracks. I feel like had Black Tusk been given (or decided on) more time to develop Set The Dial, it would've turned out easily as well as its predecessor. Maybe it was because they had a three album record deal with Relapse and wanted to get the fuck out. Who knows.

5.75 out of 10


1. Brewing the Storm

2. Bring me Darkness

3. Ender of All

4. Mass Devotion

5. Carved in Stone

6. Set the Dial to Your Doom

7. Resistor

8. This Time is Divine

9. Growing Horns

10.  Crossroads and Thunder

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