BY MICHAEL TOLAND
With members of various local metal acts at its component parts, Portland’s Lord Dying can’t help but be good at what it does. The quartet’s growling crunch-metal pound whips up a burly riff-storm on par with – and more than a little similar to – High On Fire. But Lord Dying uses HOF’s teeth-gritting stoner grind as a launching pad as much as a template, adding bits of death metal (“Perverse Osmosis”), experimental noise (“In a Frightful State of Gnawed Dismemberment”), psychedelia (“What is Not…Is”) and plain old chugging heavy metal (“Descend Into External”) to its dirty mix. But even when the bands digs into a familiar groove, as with the title track, its ease and familiarity with swingin’ that axe pushes aside questions of derivation in favor of rocking the fuck out. Originality ain’t that important in the heavy metal realm in any case – ability to deliver power, volume and the almighty riff is, and in that respect, Lord Dying’s got it down, clown.
DOWNLOAD: “Descend Into External,” “Summon the Faithless,” “What is Not…Is”