Music » CD Reviews


Down II: A Bustle in Your Hedgerow . . . (Elektra)


Down's sophomore effort is a lot like its marijuana muse: smelly, carcinogenic, and addictive. High as a mountain and just as dense, II is a less accessible, more varied affair than the self-titled 1995 debut from this Cajun metal supergroup, which features members of Pantera, C.O.C., Crowbar, and Eyehategod. Murky Delta jams and instrumental reveries are interspersed with pillars of black groove that sound like Grand Funk Railroad rocking out at a church burning. Singer Phil Anselmo demonstrates his considerable range with a rueful wail that proves his heart bleeds just as much as his knuckles. Meanwhile, Pepper Keenan and Kirk Wirdstein add soot and swing to Sabbath's riff buffet.

It all culminates in dizzying aural grimaces ("The Man That Follows Hell"), baked bombast ("Lysergik Funeral Procession"), and foreboding acoustic incantations ("Landing on the Mountains of Meggido"), which make II a sprawling, dogged quest for the ultimate sensimilla experience. Perhaps the only thing missing is the number for Domino's.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.