Valley Of The Sun – Volume Rock

VOTS_RingMasterReview:

If a title ever reflected its contents then it is Volume Rock, the new album from Cincinnati stompers Valley Of The Sun. The release is a mighty roar of rousing rock ‘n’ roll which never takes a breath and demands to be played with the dial locked on maximum. In many ways it carries on where their acclaimed debut album Electric Talons Of The Thunderhawk left off but with even more resourcefully honed and fiery exploits on board to fire up ears and rich enjoyment.

With the two well-received EPs, Two Thousand Ten and The Sayings of the Seers in 2010 and 2011 respectively, under their belt, Valley Of The Sun really caught attention and a new wealth of eager appetites with Electric Talons Of The Thunderhawk in 2014. It took their inflamed mix of stoner, hard, and desert rock to new heights with just rewards in responses and acclaim. It is easy to feel though that all of its success was just the appetiser to bigger things and reactions around the uncaging of Volume Rock and its step up in sound, songwriting, and the band’s ability to get all rocking like a bone starved hound.

The album opens on the instantly masterful and rousing swagger of Eternal Forever, ears clipped by sticks on rims as a bluesy invitation swings away alongside. In another handful of seconds, the song hits a rampant stroll with its riff loaded chest out and rhythmic hips swinging. The vocals of guitarist Ryan Ferrier quickly impress as they light ears and song whilst his riffs find quick unity with the catchy grooves of Adam Flaig, the contagious start becoming a full on anthemic enticement driven by the potent jabs of drummer Aaron Boyer and the brooding bassline of Ringo Jones.

It is an exhilarating start backed within moments by the following Wants and Needs. Slightly less urgent but no less commandingly infectious, the track has a spicy Queens Of The Stone Age feel to its melodic and vocal persuasion though equally, and not for the last time across the album, there is also a grungy essence which hints at Alice In Chains. A blaze of spirit raising rock ‘n’ roll, its success is matched and eclipse by the thick and sultry charms of The Hunt. Badgering the senses and body from start to finish, the track is an inflamed shuffle with imposing rhythms and citric grooves bound in the outstanding tones of Ferrier, his presence backed just as potently by the band in voice and enterprise.

Volumerock_FrontCover_RingMasterReviewNext up Land of Fools has enjoyment and limbs in full involvement too; it’s more reserved but seriously addictive entrance, with rhythms and riffs insatiable bait, the lead into a virulent epidemic of lean keen hooks and beats which continue the track’s initial magnetic work as sonic flames cast by the guitar of Flaig and Ferrier’s harmonic throat flare. There is no escaping a Josh Homme and co feel again to the outstanding encounter, a flavour only adding to its triumph before making way for I Breathe the Earth and its delicious bass grumble. That leading lure brings ears into t smouldering sighs of fiery guitar and in turn concussive beats and beguiling harmonies, all colluding in another aural swelter with psych and blues rock imagination.

The heavier and thicker textures of Speaketh the Shaman steps forward next, Ferrier crooning with purpose and heart within the smokier fire of the song’s sizzling climate and sound. As in a few other tracks, bands like The Sword and Torche come to mind a little, though generally a fleeting essence within Valley Of The Sun’s own creative flame. Certainly the band skilfully employs familiar hues in their own sonic designs, but as different colours in something maybe not boldly unique but undoubtedly distinct in style and character.

If previous tracks were fires, Beneath the Veil is a volcano of grooves and melodic lava, enveloping and treating ears to a white hot invasion of infectious blues rock ‘n’ roll. It roars and stomps in its groove woven waltz, springing the listener into an exhaustive dance and revelry for which no escape is possible or wanted until its last note blisters on the ears.

A chance to grab a breath is allowed momentarily by Solstice before it too is a thumping hard rock scented canter with a punkish snarl pulling tired bodies back to their soon revitalised feet. Its departure lets Empty Visions bring the album to memorable close, the track a hot bed of sonic fuzz and melodic tinder setting fire to ears and spirit under the catchy guidance and temptation of the ever impressing vocals.

It is a fine end to a thrilling encounter which just leaves you wanting more and with real greed. If Valley Of The Sun impressed before, they will blow a great many more away with Volume Rock and its incendiary rock ‘n’ roll.

Volume Rock is released April 29th via Fuzzorama Records @ http://www.fuzzoramastore.com/en/ and https://fuzzoramarecords1.bandcamp.com/album/volume-rock

https://www.facebook.com/valleyofthesun    https://twitter.com/centaur_rodeo

Pete RingMaster 28/04/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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DSW – Dust Storm Warning

 

     It is impossible not to be strongly enthused by the debut album from Italian stoner rockers DSW (Dust Storm Warning). It is not without inconsistencies but they diminish against the power and creative storm that is the release Dust Storm Warning. Consisting of eleven burning tracks of stoner rock brought with a sixties psychedelic imagination and desert rock rawness, the album evolves from something impressive to something essential for all genre fans to add to their personal playlists.

From Lecce, the band began in April 2010, with its early period seeing a few line-up changes before they released their debut EP Dawn Storm Watchers. With a subsequent change of vocalist after that bringing the band to a line-up of guitarist Marco Papadia, bassist Stefano Butelli, drummer Fabio Zullino, and frontman “Wolf” Lombardi, the settled quartet entered the studio to record Dust Storm Warning in the September of 2011, the release emerging as a fiery brew of Kyuss, Colour Haze, Red Fang, Sabbath and more within its stirring soundscapes of sonic intrusion.

Released though Acid Cosmonaut Records, the album takes no time in capturing the imagination with opening song Outrun. A straight forward slab of salty desert rock and the first song written by the band, the track consumes the ear with a rubbing persistent energy and scorched guitar melodics. Arguably not a song to stretch the realms of aural invention it nevertheless gives the senses a feast of compulsive stoner sounds to set the release off strongly.

The dusty lumbering crawl of Space Cubeship takes over next, its enveloping cloud of tight sonics and oppressive riffs a hypnotic abrasion to explore closely. Again maybe not the most groundbreaking song musically but still a thoroughly absorbing and inciteful track with an emerging groove to devour eagerly towards its climax.

After the heady 666.1.333 with its flaming caustic groove and twisted psychedelic sonic spears of sound alongside the excellent raucous gravelled tones of Lombardi, the album continues to offer marked invention but loses some of its surface impact at the same time. Whereas this song spans a diverse and incendiary soundscape to leave one breathless the first two instrumentals on the album, Dune and Sherpa, plus the track which splits them, Lonely Coyote, fail to give the same intense burn of pleasure. Dune is a brewing ambience, its shadows and focused melodic veins beautifully presented but lacking the trigger to ignite more than respect. The middle one of the three is another harsh yet pleasing rub which feels like the continuation of its predecessor, and though it arguably offers more emotion, mainly through the vocals, it still leaves one satisfied yet underwhelmed. The trio of songs are seemingly related as Sherpa again continues the journey in a similar fashion, again impossible to dismiss but lacking the flint to spark strong reactions, something the album immediately addresses with the best tracks on the release, and coincidently another consecutive trio.

     Monkey Woman is just an unbridled brawl of grazing energy and riffs spined by another irresistible groove, its hook acidic and sharp to scar the senses pleasingly. It has a feistiness and enraged heart missing from the previous triplet of songs to bring one back to the boil and ready for the giant which is Trippin’ the Drill. As intrusive and persistent as the title subject, the track attaches itself with a variation of pace and energy without allowing that niggling rub to diminish in effect or intensity. From guitars to rhythms there is a zealous presence which is tempered yet incited by the again excellent vocals and probing bass of Butelli.

Though both songs challenge the biggest highlight on the releases is Rise, a song which slowly burns its way into the senses and thoughts and  lingers long after its departure. The guitar manipulations at the beginning mesmerise whilst equally challenging the synapses with acute dynamics to leave them smarting. The tone darkens as a melancholic guitar breath emerges alongside the bass and vocals bringing a coarse Pearl Jam like smoulder across the lava melodic expulsions. It is glorious, its unpredictable expanse  thrilling.

Closing with the enthralling devastation of third instrumental Wasteland and the climactic Requiem, the album is a powerful and deeply satisfying tempest of stoner rock. Maybe DSM have yet to find their really distinct persona in the genre but Dust Storm Warning shows they are well on the way and leaving impressive sounds along the way.

https://www.facebook.com/dswband

RingMaster 27/09/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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