CD Review: Seether – “Poison the Parish” (Canine Riot/Concord)

From the very onset of Seether’s Poison the Parish, the band’s seventh album and first to be produced by frontman Shaun Morgan, it’s clear that this trio is out for blood, or perhaps they might just be out to prove something. Opener “Stoke the Fire” is a tidal wave of down-tuned guitars and loud cymbal crashes that devolve into Morgan screaming ‘who’s gonna stoke the fire?’ “Betray and Degrade” continues that manic formula, complete with one hell of a frantic onslaught during its latter stages, “Something Else” and “I’ll Survive” work to calm the waters of Poison the Parish a bit, though bombastic riffs and huge hooks still rule the day and massive single “Let You Down” is pure hard rock bliss, delivering everything you want in all the right places. From there, “Against the Wall” fills the power ballad column, “Let Me Heal” ventures into Coheed and Cambria territory, the vitriolic “Saviours” pay homage to Nirvana’s raw garage spirit, “Count Me Out” plays like a cathartic release for Morgan, “Emotionless” introduces a bit of sludge into Poison the Parish, and closer “Take a Minute” brings the album full circle, closing things out with another staunch wall of heavy sound. Poison the Parish is relentless, uncompromising and Seether’s heaviest output in years. If the band has proven anything with Poison the Parish, it’s that they still hold a place among rock music’s elite.

Grade: B+

Go Download: “Stoke the Fire”