With a sound that’s darker and heavier than their self-titled debut, Year Long Disaster have not only avoided the sophomore slump, but actually improved with their second album, Black Magic; All Mysteries Revealed. The sound is still primarily blues-influenced hard rock, but this go around, the atmosphere feels different; less Led Zeppelin and more Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Black Sabbath. The songs here feel less rushed, giving them the relaxed and confident demeanor of a band that’s starting to come into their own as songwriters. Rather than forcing the issues, songs like “Major Arcana” and “Show Me Your Teeth” are content to sit back in the groove and coolly let the rock happen, drawing the listener with the allure of a solid riff instead of beating them over the head with it. And while the riffs on Black Magic might not be particularly original, Year Long Disaster have made an important first step by coming into the right attitude, giving off the kind of distant cool that goes a long way in the realm of hard rock. All in all, Black Magic; All Mysteries Revealed is a very promising album for Year Long Disaster, giving us a glimpse of a band that has matured, showing no signs of the complacency that can sometimes ruin a band's second record. With plenty of room for innovation, and what seems like a desire to evolve, Year Long Disaster are proving themselves to be a band on the rise.
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AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney