Published Nov 09, 2016Following their reunion at last year's Housecore Horror Film Festival, Superjoint (formerly known as Superjoint Ritual) are now back with their first album in 13 years, dubbed Caught Up in the Gears of Application. The band returns with original members — the recently highly controversial vocalist Phil Anselmo (Pantera, Down, Scour) and guitarists Jimmy Bower (Down, Eyehategod) and Kevin Bond (Christ Inversion, Artimus Pyledriver) — as well as new recruits like drummer José Gonzalez (Warbeast) and bassist Stephen Taylor (Wovenhand).
Superjoint go back to their roots with this 11-track release, maintaining their brand of hardcore-infused metal that features abrasive rhythms, pummelling drums and Anselmo's distinct, harsh vocals. "Today and Tomorrow" sets the tone for the album, starting with corrosive guitars, rumbling drums and commanding spoken word that lead to volatile, punk-infused riffs. "Burning the Blanket" contains the heaviest, groove-filled riff on the record, which is layered with agonized, throat-shredding shrieks.
Unfortunately, Caught Up in the Gears of Application quickly loses momentum. "Ruin You" comes off as rather generic, while "Sociopathic Herd Delusion" recaptures Superjoint's crushing intensity, but is too short-lived to make for the rather underwhelming rest of the album. Although the band's classic sound and style are present, it's sorely lacking the kind of impact felt on 2002's Use Once and Destroy or 2003's A Lethal Dose of American Hatred. (Housecore)