Baroness Credit: P.K. Strohm

Savannah-based sludge/alternative-metal quartet Baroness have spent a long time nursing their fifth full-length, the forthcoming Gold & Grey, which is their first with new guitarist Gina Gleason, replacing the outgoing Pete Adams. (Adams will be missed, but if you ask me, it’s about time a band called Baroness had a woman member.) Singer-guitarist John Baizley has said this record is a look back at the band’s tumultuous first decade, and will be the last one titled after a color, a theme that runs through every album (and accompanying album cover) and has become interlinked with the band’s identity. The sprawling, shifting double LP shines metal, grunge, prog, and folk elements through a melancholy prism. Occasionally self-indulgent but never unforgivably so, Gold & Grey might lack in instantly gripping chug, but it rewards those who have patience for repeat listening. Dreamy interludes such as “Crooked Mile,” “Can Oscura,” and the spacy “Assault on East Falls” contrast with the heavier tracks, and this time out, the band’s heart is in psychedelic, melodic trance-outs, such as beautiful closer “Pale Sun.”   v