Brutal from the opening riff

New Zealand’s 8 Foot Sativa have been around the traps for a while now, and latest release The Shadow Masters is their fifth.

Former frontman Justin ‘Jackhammer’ Niessen has returned to the fold, adding weight to the release with his beastly guttural vocals. The production is first class and the delivery a wall of grooving metal.

Immediately setting the tone is ‘As It Burns’, opening a barrage of that headbanging enabling metal 8 Foot Sativa have been renowned for over the years. The harsh vocals of Niessen encapsulate the pummeling sound; these songs are made to be played loud. The title tracks highlights that with a blistering repeated breakdown that almost delves into Static-X territory with its repetitive conclusion. It’s very effective. The gradual intro of ‘Summoned To Rise’ offers slight respite before exploding from the speakers into another hypnotic metal jackhammer. ‘Never Abide’ continues the assault with the use of gang vocals during the chorus with brutal results. ‘The Second Chance’ winds up the album with the depressing lyrics “I’m the result of my own failure” echoing into the distance.

8 Foot Sativa are one of those under-rated bands that should be cracking into the bigger audiences but for one reason or another have just fallen shy of that echelon. For fans of Devildriver, Lamb of God and Machine Head, The Shadow Masters is brutal from the opening riff to its end. If you haven’t heard of this band already, it’s about time you hop on the 8 Foot Sativa bandwagon.

1. As It Burns
2. Shadow Masters
3. Summoned To Rise
4. Feeding The Weak
5. Never Abide
6. Anatomy Of Hate
7. Visions Of Red
8. Back To Bare Bone
9. West As
10. The Second Chance