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Rock

Floor

Oblation

[Season of Mist]

3 stars

Florida’s Floor is a bit like the stoner-metal version of Big Star, the revered 1970s power-pop band that couldn’t get arrested despite releasing three impeccable albums prior to breaking up, only to see its reputation grow long after it had disbanded. Perhaps due to the fact that Floor’s sound – a doom-laden, but eminently groove-centric wall of detuned riffage played at gloriously glacial tempos – was at odds with its immediate milieu of barely post-hair metal buffoonery and grunge bandwagon-jumping in the early ‘90s, the band never got the major label nod, and broke up in 1997. Interestingly, the band’s reputation as one of the most inventive stoner-metal acts of its time grew after Floor was no more, and leader Steve Brooks had gone on to found the much more commercially successful Torche.

Now a few years into its reunion, Floor has finally released a new studio album – only its third across the span of 20 years – “Oblation.” And man, is this thing ever a beast.

Marrying Black Sabbath-like tempos to disturbingly detuned riffs and the sort of ambitious arrangements more common to prog rock than to metal, Floor has made its most definitive statement to date with “Oblation.” From the psychedelic-tinged sturm und drang of “Rocinante,” to the slack-stringed sludge of “Love Comes Crushing,” and the bleary-eyed, doom of “Sign of Aeth,” the album offers a resilient and assured statement of Floor’s purpose. It’s both beautiful and bludgeoning.

It’s nice to see Floor get its due after all this time. The “Oblation” tour finds Floor performing at 8 p.m. Thursday in the Tralf Music Hall (622 Main St.).

- Jeff Miers