On first listen to Boris' Pink (domestically issued on Southern Lord), longtime fans of the Japanese heavy metal trio would be pressed to say that they crafted it for American audiences. This is significant to be sure. On the opening track, "Farewell," one can hear so many un-Boris-like traits -- a bit of Ride and My Bloody Valentine here, a bit of Isis (who were influenced by Boris!) there, a trace of Sigur Rós, Nadja, and Jesu, too -- that one wonders if this is a send-up spoof that's proof that they can do it better. Even if that's so, it's only a part of this glorious slab of din and rock-is-power's puzzle. Takeshi (bass, vocals), Wata (guitar), and Atsuo (drums, vocals), have not followed in the footsteps of their younger countrymen Mono in crafting dramatics and dynamics, as evidenced by the title track which follows. If anything, this is raucous, riffing speed metal married to the garage rock trash aesthetic of Guitar Wolf. Here is where Atsuo's rim shots match in triple-time the low-string, down-tuned, freakzoid riffing of Wata's and the pure squalling throb of Takeshi's bass wail. Fuzzed out, ripped and torn and shredded riffs and propeller kit work take Boris to an entirely new level of "heavy." The rootsy metallic thrash of the band outdoes anything they've done before -- "Woman on the Screen" sounds like Iggy Pop fronting the MC5 of Kick Out the Jams in the Sunn 0))) era -- all in two-minutes-and-thirty-eight seconds. Speaking of Sunn 0))), "Blackout," a crawling, plodding, menacing scree of distorted bass and bluesy high-string electric guitar, is a track reminiscent of their earlier records, like Absolutego from 1996 -- and may have influenced their American counterparts. "Pseudo-Bread" is in-the-red in everything: distortion, speed, high-rocktane metal. The 18-plus-minute "Just Abandoned My-Self" employs everything used in the album to the moment. Beginning as a pure thrash metal burner, it begins its exploration of texture, noise, and sonic murder at a slower tempo in six-and-a-half minutes. It's like Acid Mothers Temple only more focused, and slower to evolve. Wata's guitar playing feels incidental to Takeshi's propulsive bass crunch and drone, which becomes pure controlled noise abstraction at about 122 minutes, and takes it out until only the sound of microtonal feedback remains, blasting everything into silence. Pink is easily the most cohesive, adventurous, and straight-ahead rocking recording of their 12-year career. If indeed the set was consciously made with Americanski audiences in mind, good; then more power to them. Boris are the kings who have set the metal bar very high on Pink. It's an album to be reckoned with.