In 2002 Boris performed their most significant transformation to date by dropping this two ton boulder of punk-stoner metal hybrid.
Following their genre defining run of drone monoliths Absolutego, Amplifier Worship, and the transcendent Flood (an Optimistic Underground favorite), this was a strange tonic, an abrasive breath of fresh air shaking up everything known about the band at the time. And as with nearly all new Boris endeavors, fans gladly drank it up and held on for the wild ride.
Launching hard and fast with the balls-out (and self-explanitory) Heavy Friends, the band takes no time in setting the stage for the crushingly immense rock histrionics spread over these 47 distortion-blasted minutes. Featuring subtle guest appearances by Masonna and Merzbow, among others, each track takes a kernel of delicious gravitational beauty and detonates it, scorching the landscape in stomping kinetic fashion.
Being the first non-drone album in the band’s catalogue, it’s unsurprising this album featured their widest breadth of material on a single platter yet. Somehow though, everything is colored in the same cohesive manner as the album art itself. Riff-laden punk slab Rattlesnake rests comfortably alongside glitch-sprinkled groove behemoth Death Valley, while psychedelic nugget Soft Edge splits the album down the middle (and presages the majestic Rainbow, also posted here on OU).
Ending with the utterly classic single 1970, Boris go out with a bass thumping bang and seal the deal on the album which has since become the blueprint for their massive output to this date.
Here’s the full album stream:
Being out of print for a long time, the album is now back in stock at inoxia record shop, so grab it while you still can. Prices are sky high on ebay most of the time!