IV, Part 1: The Purple EP

New Orleans based “supergroup” Down is back – finally. I won’t lie, I’m a huge fan so maybe I’m a bit biased in their favor, but this new EP is rad. Sticking with the Led Zeppelin/Van Halen styled numbered album titles, The Purple EP is supposedly the first of four installments of their fourth chapter, focused on the more crushingly heavy and obvious Black Sabbath worshiping aspects of their sound. So just how heavy is it? I’d wager to say it weighs in around a metric fuck-ton.

The southern boys are once again atop of their game; nary a mediocre riff in site, Pepper Keenan and Kirk Windstein deliver “all killer, no filler” riffs that should make Tony Iommi blush, accompanied by plenty of soulful solos; Mr. Jimmy Bower serves up a solid backbone for these tunes as always; new fourstringer Patrick Bruders of Crowbar/Goatwhore fame, melds right in seamlessly, admirably replacing Rex Brown, while Phil Anselmo continues to hone and improve his gruff-edged singing style, crooning away with the best of them.

So after a five year silence, they open this little gem perfectly with “Levitation”, slowly building in volume and intensity with a riff powerful enough to pulverize bones, and continuing on with sludgy doomy goodness that is matched by few. First single “Witchtripper” follows suite in the same fashion, but throws in a good dose of instant memorability (read: it’s hooky), as does “Open Coffins”, arguably the EP’s strongest track. “The Curse is a Lie”, is dialed back somewhat, slowing the tempo even further and sprinkling in a few touches of blues-y guitar bits. “This Work is Timeless” is another hooky tune with a slightly brisker pace, while album closer “Misfortune Teller” is the be all, end all of heavy here, similar to “Bury Me in Smoke” from Nola, packing an absolutely bludgeoning riff in it’s back half capable of making the Incredible Hulk cower in fear – fuck yeah.

If it sounds like I’m gushing, I am – I couldn’t be happier with this release, but I am by no means sort of a blind fanboy – I won’t hesitate to call a spade a spade, but this ain’t no spade, just pure awesome. Nice work once again boys.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Larry "Staylow" Owens
November 13th, 2012


  1. Commented by: Shane

    Definitely solid. I like it.

  2. Commented by: Dimaension X

    I’ve always preferred Anselmo in this band over Pantera. It’s a much more “organic” sound.

  3. Commented by: Blackwater Park

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