Sulaco Tearing through the Roots

The full-length debut from former Lethargy member Erik Burke was worth the wait. The legendary Rochester heavy hitter set a precedence for the scene while other former Lethargy members — Bill Kelliher and Brann Dailor — went on to form Mastodon, one of the most widely acclaimed groups in contemporary metal. Though he took a considerably longer time putting out his project, spending some time drumming in Kalibas as well as forming MungbeanDemon with Sulaco bassist Lon Hackett, you can hear that he and his former band-mates vaguely share an artistic vision. Following up a short EP released on Relapse in 2003, Sulaco’s brand of technical mayhem brings a heavy groove to intense time manipulation and gritty melodies. Burnt by the Sun come to mind during some of the heavy-handed riffing and especially in terms of the vocals. They’re much more inclined to shred but bring the same amount of intricacy and intensity as BBTS to their music. Another fine addition to the Willowtip catalogue, it’s beginning to seem as if Jason Tipton’s taste is infallible. (Willowtip)