Deliverance saw the band move far away from their hardcore punk and cross over Thrash roots, and move into a territory of big, wide, Sabbath inspired songs, Southern leanings and a retro-feel that was paradoxically the modern thing at the time, when both alternative metal and stoner rock were starting to pick up followings.
There is some variety to be found here too, such as in the brief acoustic number ‘Without Wings,’ and the slide guitar filled, haunting southern ballad ‘Shelter,’ both of which help elevate the album above the crowd and display the bands musicality in addition to the raw rock energy that comes across on the rest of the tracks.
Pepper Keenan’s vocals are excellent here, at times evoking a mixture of Ozzy Osbourne, Ronnie Von Zant and James Hetfield. The guitar and bass work is top notch as always, with big riffs being par for the course as well as the excellent drums from Reed Mullin that are tight, nuanced and 70s influenced.
Highlights include ‘Broken Man’ as well as the big singles ‘Albatross’ and ‘Clean My Wounds,’ and lastly the subtly menacing album closer ‘Pearls Before Swine,’ which perfectly treads the line between slow, brooding, spacey stoner rock and a big loud groove metal track.
Overall; Deliverance features that powerful, indefinable ‘classic album’ x-factor in spades. Any serious fan of the band will no doubt be familiar with the record and it is a perfect starting point for any potential new fans.