High Priests latest release, Sanctum is a groovy psychedelic adventure riddled with gritty textures and dark imagery. The twenty-one-minute romp is blistered with exciting riffs and lyrics that beg you to “free your mind”.
Roughly put, the formula for Sanctum is one-part old school Black Sabbath inspired metal with a few extra doses from psychedelic influences. Layered atop of these are guitars played through gritty filters and vocals that bend and soar. Sound like a winner yet? Ah, and there are endless groovy riffs. For me, all four songs on Sanctum are winners.
Put together, the songs are even stronger. The EP bleeds together perfectly, one song leads directly into the next. The gaps are hardly noticeable, which score extra points in my book. I enjoy records that sound seamless. This could potentially become draining, especially with a genre that is made up almost entirely of growling guitar riffs. However, High Priests have crafted distinct openings and endings to their tracks, queuing the listener in on when songs begin and end.
Songs Worth Investigating
As anyone who follows my music writing knows, I find it hard to pick out individual songs when an album only has a few tracks. Sanctum is a perfect example of this. But I digress. “Offerings” is an epic tune, standing in at seven minutes flat, it accounts for a third of the EP’s runtime. However, “Descent” is a close second, given the reoccurring command to “free your mind”, I find it hard not to obey.
…And to Conclude
Sanctum is a great EP. It shows what the band is capable of and argues that we should all be eager and excited to see what else they pump out. Musically, there are more than enough well executed stoner metal elements to go around. The riffs keep you locked in and the vocals keep your mind strung up. Overall, this psychedelic metal album is a fun, enjoyable record.