Saint Vitus Saint Vitus

Saint Vitus Saint Vitus
6
Any fan of Saint Vitus's pre-Wino era material has good reason to be excited for the band's first album to feature original vocalist Scott Reagers in over 20 years. Reagers' return to recording is pretty good as a whole, but some weaker moments on the album lead to mixed results.
 
From the first fuzzy, droning note on "Remains," everything points to a fantastic comeback. The riffs are doomy, the bass is thick, drums are hard-hitting and the vocals are as sinister as ever. Saint Vitus stir up bong-worshipping doom riffs on songs like "Hour Glass" or "12 Years in the Tomb" while incorporating experimental psych solos for listeners to get lost in.
 
As the record  approaches its end, it takes a turn for the worse though. "City Park" is an unnecessary track of literal cricket noises, serving only to fill space, while "Last Breath" is easily one of the weakest doom songs on the album. The band finish off with a speedy punk banger on "Useless," which is great in its own right, but feels extremely jarring with its placement. Had the band paired it next to a faster rock jam like "Bloodshed," it would be a highlight instead of an afterthought.
 
Saint Vitus put together a good record with some fun songs if you're into more old-school Sabbath-style doom metal. The weak decisions toward the end distract from the successes early on, but as a whole, the record is a good piece of work from one of the true pioneers of the genre. (Season of Mist)