Few metal bands in the past two decades have had as fascinating arc as Baroness, who have evolved from a murky sludge band from Savannah, Georgia into a more melodic and progressive group spread out over various cities and displaying an even more diverse set of influences. With new double-album Gold & Grey, their chromatic album arc is reaching its end, though the band itself isn’t by any means, and the first taste of the album is at once entirely new ground and perfectly in line with the band’s vision. Less immediately ripping than some of their past singles such as “Shock Me” or “Take My Bones Away,” “Borderlines” is atmospheric yet heavy on groove, with John Baizley and Gina Gleason trading off intricate riffs just as nimbly as Baizley did with Pete Adams on the band’s previous three albums. The balance of a big synth backing with muscular musicianship, on paper, suggests their most prog moment yet, but the execution sounds more like Baroness embracing their pop sensibility—something they’ve never shied away from, but which suits them beautifully here. The only constant in Baroness’ music is that they never stop moving forward.
From Gold & Grey, out June 11 via Abraxan Hymns.
Jeff Terich is the founder and editor of Treble. He's been writing about music for 20 years and has been published at American Songwriter, Bandcamp Daily, Reverb, Spin, Stereogum, uDiscoverMusic, VinylMePlease and some others that he's forgetting right now. He's still not tired of it.