High On Fire The Art of Self Defense

High On FireThe Art of Self Defense
Luckily for High on Fire fans, the reissue of the often out-of-print Oakland, CA trio's 2000 debut album is now readily available and strangely, while remixed and remastered, retains the original razor-blunted sharpness - this is not a negative aspect, by any means. Much of this has to do with then-bassist George Rice's signature, fuzzed-out, grainy bottom end and vintage-sounding amps, especially on opener "Baghdad." This, in comparison to the shiny veneer of 2010's Snakes for the Divine, sounds like what every High on Fire album should. "Blood from Zion" is arguably the best track on the album simply based on vocalist/guitarist Matt Pike's slithering guitar work, but the excellent cover of Celtic Frost's "The Usurper" shines with the Motörhead treatment. Bonus tracks include demos of "Blood from Zion," "1000 Years" and rarity "Steel Shoe." Those who purchase a physical copy will also get a 48-page booklet. This is definitely worth picking up. (Southern Lord)