‘Down IV Part 1 – The Purple EP’ Review
It’s been a long time coming (five years!), but ‘The Purple EP’ quickly lulls us back into a familiar, smoke-screened mood with opener ‘Levitation,’ and as with every Down release there’s a comfortable sense of slack-jawed abrasiveness permeating throughout every riff. Shifting through whiskey-soaked sections effortlessly, it jumps artfully from southern-style flourishes to Trouble-esque doom grooves, and gently ascends a notch into blues-fuelled grandiosity. ‘Witchtripper’ lands with a slightly warmer tone and packs a gnostic vibe – a religious ode to the Sabbathian riff – the bloodline running through the majority of this sextet of hotbox anthems. Delving into the latter half (‘The Curse Is A Lie’ and ‘This Work Is Timeless’), ‘The Purple EP’ descends into a shroud of potent mellowness – like traveling down the proverbial rabbit hole – Phil’s smoky sermons a scene of hopefulness. The sativa spell is broken with closing track ‘Misfortune Teller’, reminding us of the varied fiddlings of the opener, and bringing the EP full-circle in typical mid-paced fashion. At its best, this first of four forthcoming EPs provides a panoramic aural view of Down’s honesty and confident songwriting, and at its worst, it’s simply not long enough. ‘The Purple EP’ is as commanding as it is heartfelt, and beyond all, it’s an epitaph to a labour of love with good friends, a bottle of Jack and a big fatty.
by Lee MacBride