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Over thirty years since it began, Eyehategod somehow still exists. Not only that, but despite seemingly constant setbacks (bandmember deaths, interpersonal squabbling, singer Mike IX Williams suffering liver failure), the New Orleans band is, if anything, stronger than ever. Seven years after its previous self-titled LP, the quartet comes back swinging with sixth LP A History of Nomadic Behavior. While still working within the general framework of depressive doomcore, the songs do more than just lumber along at the pace of a wounded dinosaur. Tempo and time signature shifts, melodies betraying the influences of postpunk and prog rock as much as doom metal and hardcore, and a dynamic sense practically unheard of on previous platters bespeak a remarkable leap of creative development. Williams’ feral howl remains unchanged, of course, but it takes on different hues as the musicians paint with different colors. The single (as if an album like this needed such a thing) “High Risk Trigger” strips down to riff, groove, and screech, while album closer “Every Thing, Every Day” claims a punk spirit as Williams vents mundane frustrations as if they’re cause for starting a war. The fierce “Three Black Eyes,” the grinding “The Day Felt Wrong” and the oddly funny “The Trial of Johnny Cancer” push EHG’s music forward while remaining true to its original virtues. A History of Nomadic Behavior re-establishes Eyehategod as the premier name in hate metal.
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