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The contested subgenre of sludge tends to teeter more toward oppressive doom metal or free-spirited stoner rock, with LORD erring on the latter. A little hypnotic and a lot heavy, these Virginia boys give us a taste of their hard swing with “Whispering Snakes,” streaming exclusively below, from their upcoming release Desperation Finds Hunger in All Men. The record will serve as a follow-up to last year’s full-length Blacklisted.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hrv88y8Cq-4

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Taking a nod from neighbor to the north, Clutch, this five-piece manages to counterbalance hard-hitting subject matter with a musical style that’s just as hard but still brings the fun. Steven Kerchner’s belt-out vocals (and “moist noise” practitioning) slaps against the groove of the main riff. Steadily climbing the summit before being knocked back down, instrumentals embody the such-is-life resilience on which sludge formed. It’s perhaps the aura of Southern greenery shrouded by night that prompts insight into the artificial lives we live within four white walls.

Visuals further encompass an empty armchair, a shoddy cable system, and a litany of voices with compatible monologues. Together, these details spur a dialogue about isolation, technology, and how the rosy media we consume conflicts with the darkness of tribulations that plague us. While the TV set does a lot of talking, the mind possesses the bad thoughts that cloud our visions as we shake at the prospect of letting them pour forth. Depression is like a whispering snake feeding us lies about how we would be better off dead, when really, no one is truly alone, and everyone deserves to live -- a message that LORD aims to preach. But of course, the interpretation is ultimately yours.

-- Jenna Depasquale

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Desperation Finds Hunger In All Men releases August 24th via Heavy Hound Records. Follow the band on Facebook.

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