Armed For Apocalypse from Chico, California are a sludge metal act formed from ex-members of Will Haven and The Abominable Iron Sloth. I can't say I ever gave a fuck about either of those bands, but they combined to write a hell of a record and called it The Road Will End.

The quick and easy comparison is to say they have a lot of moments that sound like Pantera, Crowbar and Down. However, they don't limit themselves to the confines of the sludge sub-genre. They dip their toes into hardcore and metalcore that sounds right at home in California. They dabble into crusty d-beat parts that could earn them a patch on the jacket of some hobo with an iPhone. But their most impressive genre foray is when winding down songs go into post-metal territory.

Over the last month I have spun this record a good amount of times. Initially I was drawn in by the Anselmo-ish vocals, but the dexterity of the band is what has kept me coming back. Armed For Apocalypse cover every genre I love and sound comfortable doing so. I had never heard of them before this record, but The Road Will End has made its way into my top ten for the year.