Though it’s been six years since the release of Ritual Abuse, the time away hasn’t altered Cough’s mission statement. Much like their sister band Windhand, Electric Wizard’s influence is felt throughout this album’s droning tempos, drawn out song lengths, and lyrics reeking of pain and misanthropy. The fact that Jus Oborn himself is on production duties here gives it more legitimacy than your typical pretender.
But when compared to their previous two albums, Still They Pray may be their most melodic effort yet. This is most evident with the closing title track, an acoustic number that still manages to be pretty ominous. The traditional doom songs also exercise cleaner performances and memorable vocal lines with “Dead Among The Roses” and the mournful “Let It Bleed” as particular standouts.
Of course, the album is still full of piss and vinegar. “Masters of Torture” and “The Wounding Hour” showcase harsher vocals and an angrier outlook that dares to outdo the Wizard’s last effort. Add in the atmospheric though slightly overlong instrumental “Shadow Of The Torturer” and you have a surprisingly varied album.
Like many of their peers, Cough gives off the impression of being a one trick pony while offering depth with further examination. It’s difficult to see how it compares to their other studio entries but its more melodic nature may make it slightly easier to get into for newer fans. Here’s hoping they stick around and work even harder to usurp the Dopethrone…
“Haunter Of The Dark”
“Dead Among The Roses”
“Let It Bleed”
“Still They Pray”