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ROCKET REVIEW: C.O.C – “No Cross No Crown” (CD)

CORROSION OF CONFORMITY aren’t righteous men… but they do jam with the same conviction as a hundred holy. In 2018, the legendary Southern metal band blows the damn door of its hinges with the long anticipated return of the one and only, the master of disaster, El Diablo of Rock, the minister of death: guitarist/vocalist Pepper Keenan. This epic fifteen track slammer will have you running with the devil in no time, it’s that unbelievably good. I really found myself digging the crazy ‘acid rock’ vibe, and the fact that the songwriting ventures right back to my favorite C.O.C album ever “In The Arms Of God”, released in 2005. The shit kicking adventure begins with the all out grooving “Novus Deus”, “The Luddite”, which questions mankind’s advancing technology, and the simply masterful “Cast the First Stone”. The latter features some off the album’s best guitar playing by Pepper and the maestro that keeps on giving, Woody Weatherman. The album was cut in North Carolina with producer John Custer. The short interludes that are littered throughout give the record almost a feeling as if a story is being told. While this is certainly not a concept album, for me, it feels more than a fiery rock sermon delivered with six strings. It has its own vicious tale to tell, that goes full circle, and everything adds up in the end. The listener will be smoked from head to toe by the downright brilliance delivered. The drums and bass are bumping with intensity like two wild cats locked together in a street fight. There is no sympathy for the listener, taken on a mind altering journey into a psychedelic storm of doom.

Up next, “No Cross” will burn your soul in many places, along with the simply scorching “Wolf Named Crow”, “Little Man” and the moody acoustic interlude “Matre’s Diem”. “Forgive Me”, is my personal favorite, along with “Nothing Left to Say”, and these gems are followed by the piano laced “Sacred Isolation” plus totally crushing “Old Disaster”. The album comes to conclusion with maybe the best set of songs out of the collection, “E.L.M.”, the demonic, almost ritual-like title track “No Cross No Crown”, “A Quest to Believe (A Call to the Void)” and “Son and Daughter”. Fans of BLACK SABBATH, DOWN and other really well produced hard rock/heavy metal music will definitely want to add this undeniable classic to their collection.

No Cross No Crown (CD)

(Nuclear Blast Records/2018)


1 – Novus Deus
2 – The Luddite
3 – Cast the First Stone
4 – No Cross
5 – Wolf Named Crow
6 – Little Man
7 – Matre’s Diem
8 – Forgive Me
9 – Nothing Left to Say
10 – Sacred Isolation
11 – Old Disaster
12 – E.L.M.
13 – No Cross No Crown
14 – A Quest to Believe (A Call to the Void)
15 – Son and Daughter