Red Fang, Only Ghosts (Relapse)

[PROGRESSIVE POP METAL] Red Fang’s most recent release delivers 10 tracks of barraging alt-metal brimming with hooky riffs sure to conjure nostalgia for the headbanging earworms of Korn, Slipknot and Machine Head. Having helmed some of the seminal albums of that era, producer Ross Robinson is no doubt responsible for the subtle nu-metal flavor that bleeds into Only Ghosts—see the repetitive, distorted guitar and screaming vocals on “Cut it Short” and “Shadows.” But don’t let the big names in the liner notes fool you. Only Ghosts is still killer, ear-popping fun. Red Fang’s colossal, party-inducing chops have not slowed or been tamed since its inception in 2005, regardless of who’s behind the boards. The album contains the best of Red Fang’s twin musical worlds, with shorter, simpler tracks like “Not for You” following drawn-out psychedelic metal trips like “The Smell of the Sound.” Red Fang proves on its fourth album that it’s more than capable of delivering heavy, entertaining material without sacrificing progress. And the band members haven’t lost their sense of humor, either—check out the Predator-and-PBR-themed video for “Shadows” as proof. 

SEE IT: Red Fang plays Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St., with Torche and Whores, on Saturday, Dec. 17. 9 pm. $23 advance, $25 day of show. 21+.