Experimental death metallers Job for a Cowboy are pleased to unleash “Beyond The Chemical Doorway,” the latest single from their long-awaited new full-length, “Moon Healer”, set for release on February 23rd via Metal Blade Records. The release marks the iconic outfit’s first new full-length in a decade!
“Moon Healer” is a vivid illustration of what happens when creativity, aggression, and volatility tangle for the first time in years. Like the band’s critically adored, 2014-released Sun Eater full-length, Moon Healer is musically multifaceted, unabashedly brutal, and compellingly conceptual. Featuring a newly refreshed and reinspired lineup of frontman and co-founder Jonny Davy, guitarists Tony Sannicandro and Al Glassman, bassist Nick Schendzielos, and drummer (since 2020) Navene Koperweis, the band seamlessly picks up the mantle where Sun Eater left off.
Compared to past offerings, “Moon Healer” is as bone-crushing as Job for a Cowboy has ever been. But it’s more consistent and conceptual, composed with the utmost enthusiasm and confidence.
“The evolution of our sound has become a big part of the band,” Davy says. “As we mature as musicians, our tastes and interests naturally expand. With age comes more experience and ideas that we wouldn’t have considered in our earlier years.”
When discussing the lyrical genesis of songs “Grinding Wheels Of Ophanim,” “Into The Crystalline Crypts,” and latest single, “Beyond The Chemical Doorway,” Davy’s writing gets cryptic and elliptical-sounding, part Philip K. Dick, part Timothy Leary.
“I envision this as a death metal album born from the mystical confines of an alchemist’s laboratory. The music acts as potent potions, inducing hallucinogenic journeys that unlock the secrets of the universe.”
With “Beyond The Chemical Doorway,” Davy explores Gnosticism – an occult teaching based on Gnosis, a state of transcendence achieved through intuitive, unconventional means – by way of Hieronymus Bosch’s art. Elaborates Davy, “On Moon Healer, we unravel the dismal narrative of a close friend consumed by an unwavering pursuit of enlightenment. They achieve this through a compulsive embrace of hallucinogenic drugs. This storyline emerges from the foundation set in our earlier album, Sun Eater, delving deeper into the intricacies brewing within our friend’s psyche.
“When under the influence of these drugs,” he continues, “this individual claimed to encounter entities and find themselves in indescribable worlds that defy rational comprehension. Many who undergo such experiences draw intriguing parallels between diverse facets of Gnostic philosophy, biblical depictions of angels, and the stages of Bardo Thodol delineated in the Tibetan Book Of The Dead. In the album’s opener, ‘Beyond The Chemical Doorway,’ our friend vividly voices his hallucinations, recounting the experience of breaching forbidden, gnostic-like realms, with each account culminating in the utter unraveling of his being.”
Photo by Chris Klumpp