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3.65 | 4 ratings | 2 reviews
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EP · 2000


1. Prayer (07:25)
2. An Offering (07:50)
3. Flood (04:08)
4. Sovereign (13:17)

Total Time 32:40

2000 Japanese edition and 2011 remastered edition:

5. Misgiven (06:42)

Total Time 39:22


- Dave Edwardson / bass, additional vocals
- Jason Roeder / drums
- Steve Von Till / guitar, vocals
- Scott Kelly / vocals, guitar
- Noah Landis / keyboards

Guest musicians:
- Jackie Gratz / cello
- Jon Birdsong / cornet, tuba
- Johannes Mager / trombone
- Kris Force / violin
- Jerry Landis / narrator
- Kristin Von Till / narrator
- Pete Inc. / other [live visuals]

About this release

Enhanced CD with multimedia section released 31st October 2000 on Neurot Recordings (NR008) / Music For Nations (CDMFNM258).

LP released 31st October 2000 on Hydra Head Records / Neurot Recordings (HH666-60 / NR-008), limited to 1300 copies:
- 900 copies on grey splatter vinyl
- 300 copies on purple splatter vinyl
- 100 copies on clear red vinyl

Cassette released 2000 on Metal Mind Productions (MASS 0836).

CD released 2000 in Japan on Music For Nations (VICP-61229). Includes a hidden track titled "Misgiven" after a minute of silence after the last track.

LP reissued 16th April 2011 on Hydra Head Records / Neurot Recordings (HH666-60 / NR-008), limited to 600 copies:
- 200 copies on black vinyl
- 200 copies on red/black marble vinyl
- 200 copies on clear vinyl

CD remaster released 20th September 2011 on Neurot Recordings (NR077) with new artwork and a bonus track.

Artwork By [Design & Construction] - A. Turner
Artwork By [Neurot Symbol & Irmunsil Illustration] - Markus Wolff
Mastered By - Dave Collins
Photography - Nancy Kesselring
Engineer - Steve Albini
Engineer [Additional] - Greg Norman, Jeff Byrd, Noah Landis, Rob Bochnick
Producer - Steve Albini

Recorded at Electrical Audio Recording, Chicago.
Additional overdubs and mixing at Mr. Toads, San Francisco.
Mastered at A&M.

Track "Prayer" later reworked in "From Where Its Roots Run" on "A Sun That Never Sets" album.
Track "An Offering" is actually reworked "End Of The Harvest" from "Times Of Grace" album with another lyrics.
Track "Sovereign" contains elements of "The Road To Sovereignty" from "Times Of Grace" album.

Thanks to Time Signature, Bosh66 for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

Sovereign is an EP by the pioneering Californian Sludge/Post Metal band Neurosis, released in 2000 and slotting in chronologically between the full-length studio albums Times Of Grace and A Sun That Never Sets.

The half-hour long, four track EP was produced by Steve Albini and while a little calmer and quieter, continues very much where Times Of Grace left off, focusing on long dense tracks of hypnotic build ups and harsh vocals. Slow speeds, thumping echoey drum beats and haunting background noise is very much the order of things here and Sovereign is also full of samples of dialogue to add a little something extra to the overall sound.

It seems that the best way to describe the overall feel is `intense,' as the band create oppressive atmospheres and use repetition really effectively so that songs have a feeling of progress and when they play the same part again, slightly more energetically, or with on more cymbal in the mix it seems like a revelation you have been waiting for. This kind of brooding intensity is often described as emotionally draining and requires a lot of patience from the listener, but when things finally do kick off into big hard metal territory, such as six and a half minutes into `An Offering,' it only makes it all the more rewarding.

When the band do take things in a more metal direction the guitars are big, loud and sludgey, with the trademark dirty Neurosis bass sound which many bands have since taken influence from, and of course Steve Von Till and Scott Kelly's incredible vocal work, which has served as part of the blue print for a thousand other bands.

The material is quite slow but not as challengingly slow as on the follow-up album A Sun That Never Sets, which would take things to a whole other level (and also including violins and violas) and things even pick up speed now and again on this EP, such as on the track Flood, which works as something of a tribal drum solo and about four minutes into the brooding thirteen minute Title Track.

Overall; If you are a fan of Neurosis then Sovereign is a good EP and something that you should definitely pick up a copy of. It would probably serve new fans however to pick up a proper studio album such as Times Of Grace or Through Silver In Blood.

***Note that Remastered editions come with a slipcase and the six minute bonus track `Misgiven.' ***
Time Signature

Genre: sludge rock/metal

Originally released in 2000, this legandary EP is scheduled for rerelease in September 2011 with a previously unreleased bonus track on it.

From beginning to end, the listener is in for an unpleasantly dark and entrancing journey through heavy and sludgy music, ranging from the almost Ennio Morricone-like (well, Ennio Morricone suffering from a massive depression, that is) over 'An Offering' - which offers both traditional doom, drone doom, and groovy sludge doom - to the soundscape infused 'Flood' and 'Sovereign'. And then there is the previously unreleased bonus track 'Misgiven' which, with its use of various drill sounds, certainly is not for those who suffer from fear of dentists.

Although the music is heavy and lumbering, and entrancing, the tunes on "Sovereign" are quite varied in their own way, and, if you like unpolished sludgy music, you definitely should have a go at this release.

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