Sleep guitarist Matt Pike formed High on Fire in 1998, alongside drummer Des Kensel and bassist George Rice. Surrounded By Thieves is the Oakland band's sophomore album, and as the artwork might suggest, it is dark and intense. Super dark and intense, actually. From the opening seconds of "Eyes & Teeth," the trio doesn't hold back, with punishing amounts of volume, distortion, and angst driving each song. Then there is Pike's aggressive vocals. This is what you put on when you gotta be charged the fuck up: just straight-up, unapologetic stoner/doom metal to be consumed in heavy doses. Check out "Hung, Drawn and Quartered," "Speedwolf," and "The Yeti."
- sea blue w/ splatter vinyl
- edition of 1245
- gatefold sleeve, insert w/ song titles & lyrics included
- music label: Relapse Records 2002 / 2018
reviewed by singing in japanese 11/18
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