Pitch Black Forecast

Here’s one I’ve been anticipating for awhile. Pitch Black Forecast is the new project from Jason Popson, formerly half of Mushroomhead’s vocal attack. While I was curious as to what kind of direction Popson would go in leaving his former mega-band, I was more interested in the fact that the godly Gene Hoglan was to be involved. “Mean” Gene is hands down my favorite drummer ever, so his involvement means it’s a mandatory must hear.

As I expected, Popson wanted something a little more metal and a little less “nu”. Absentee is a riff filled endeavor chock full of groove and half thrash. Machine Head and Pantera are valid references here, and Popson’s vocals have taken on a certain Anselmo-esque quality. While sounding slightly restrained, Mr. Hoglan’s drumming is top notch as ever, complimenting and well-fitting of the riffs.

The albums 9 fairly short tracks breeze by in a mere 29 or so minutes, but among them are a few noteworthy moments. Album opener “Atonement” locks into a killer groove riff from the word go and doesn’t let up. “Wrapped in Plastic” and “Ornament” are much thrashier than the bulk of material here, so they stand out a bit more amongst the thick groove. “Breathe Now” has a catchy as the plague chorus and “So Low” is a heavy as a ton of bricks, hammer blow to the head and features some guest vocals from Lamb of God’s Randy Blythe.

Even though I kind of dig what these guys are doing here, there is absolutely nothing special about Absentee – it’s all been done before, and it’s been done better. I can imagine that a lot of Mushroomhead fans who were confused by Popson’s departure from the group will still be confused when they hear metal here. Though if you dig on stuff like Machine Head, Pantera or possibly even Lamb of God, chances are you’ll find something you enjoy here as well.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Larry "Staylow" Owens
October 23rd, 2008


  1. Commented by: LoftComplication

    I had this band written down and I just looked over the list today and I couldn’t remember why. Im guessing its the Gene Hoglan link. Kind of a coincidence.

  2. Commented by: swampthang


  3. Commented by: Cynicgods

    Was Popson the guy that sounded like a third-rate Ian Astbury impersonator or the “growler” in Mushroomhead? Hoglan’s one of my favorite drummers as well, so consider my interest piqued.

  4. Commented by: Staylow

    Popson was the growler.

Leave a Reply

Privacy notice: When you submit a comment, your creditentials, message and IP address will be logged. A cookie will also be created on your browser with your chosen name and email, so that you do not need to type them again to post a new comment. All post and details will also go through an automatic spam check via Akismet's servers and need to be manually approved (so don't wonder about the delay). We purge our logs from your meta-data at frequent intervals.

  • Tzompantli   - Beating the Drums of Ancestral Force
  • Ad Patres - Unbreathable
  • WyndRider - Revival
  • Unleashed - Before the Creation of Time
  • Ulcerate - Cutting the Throat of God
  • Assassin - The Upcoming Terror/ Interstellar Experience (Reissues)
  • Nyrak - Devourer of All
  • Summoner’s Circle - Cult
  • Kratti - Matka Kohti Kosmista
  • Suffering Souls - An Iconic Taste of Demise
  • Vale of Pnath - Between the Worlds of Life and Death
  • Pathology - Unholy Descent
  • Ischemic - Condemned to the Breaking Wheel
  • Terminal Nation  - Echoes of the Devil’s Den
  • (Un)Worthy - This Present Darkness