Sleep - Dopesmoker

After a chequered past of unauthorised copies and severely edited versions, Dopesmoker is at last getting a fully endorsed and heralded release. The final album from the stoner legends Sleep before they split into two separate entities, the hour long piece is the ultimate weed anthem, a thick aural haze of smokin' riffs and meditations from the bottom of the bong. Remixed from the original sessions and restored to the full 63 minutes, we at last have the definitive version of this most epic of trips.

Centred on Matt Pike's colossal riffs, Dopesmoker settles into a slow groove that is as mesmeric as it is heavy. Al Cisneros' booming chanting vocals come across ritualistic, only adding to the surreal atmosphere that leaves the listener in a strange washed out, seemingly drug-induced state. This particular reissue is rounded out with a god-awful live bonus track; I'm sure the actual performance is great, but the quality of the recording is atrocious and practically unlistenable – just ignore and concentrate on the real reason we're here.

Overall

7

out of 10

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