It’d be nothing new for me to gush over another Integrity release (or an A389 Records one, for that matter), so I’ll try to keep the fawning to a minimum. Suicide Black Snake is somewhat monumental in the rather vast Integrity catalog in that it’s the first full-length release to feature mastermind Dwid Hellion’s main collaborator and shred machine Robert Orr. Featuring a few re-recorded tracks from last year’s Detonate VVorlds Plague 12”, Suicide Black Snake is classic Integrity with Orr’s Melnickian-yet-unique twist (and a few curveballs—a harmonica solo, for instance—thrown in the mix). Now, as one whose coming-of-age was undeniably molded by Fear Tomorrow through Seasons-era Integrity, it’s simply impossible for me to put any newer output on that same level. That said, as with 2010’s The Blackest Curse and the slew of EPs in the last many years, there are definitely songs on Suicide Black Snake that are on par with that heyday, and the rest of the tracks are still brilliant, bleak, and unquestionably Integrity. If you already celebrate the band’s more recent work, then, no doubt, you’re in for a treat. And if you’re like many others who haven’t paid much attention since those “classic” records, spend some time with this one. I imagine you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Fuck yes.
–Dave William (A389)