Sometimes I get a feeling that every time Electric Wizard is releasing a new album or merch design, there is an entrenched discussion about whether it should feature: a bong, a cross, a goat, robed figures, nuns, nudity or zombies — usually resulting in half the list being included. Still, there is no question of how good ‘Wizard are at their craft. Records like Dopethrone, We Live and last year’s Witchcult Today are in their groovy stoner-haze splendor perfect examples of the difference between playing the guitar and playing the guitar — as shown by Jus Oborn and Liz Buckingham. Now The House on the Borderland — which is their contribution to this split with equally traditionalist Finnish band Reverend Bizarre — does not stand up very well to the quality of EW’s back-catalog, but is still a solid track. On the other hand, RB’s cover of classic Finnish black metal act Beherit’s The Gate of Nanna is an amazing vinyl-smelling retrotrip complete with cheesily spoken vocal passages and Omen choirs. It really warms my heart that there are people who persist in their quest of recreating the 70s, honoring Sabbath and find the riff.

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