Saturday, August 29, 2009

Do You Want SMOKE?

Ok, this album was available as direct download at this blog. But to bad, the link went down. Smoke from sunny California is a Stoner Rock band with some 70's influences. For you who didn't get this album... DO IT NOW!

Who would've thought that a band named Smoke would play stoner rock? Smoke's music could be compared to a lot of bands, and most of those bands sound pretty much the same too, which immediately makes me wonder if this is really worth the while. Smoke like big fuzzy guitars, pentatonic riffs and whawha-filled solos, The singer sounds somewhat like Danzig meets a bored Lemmy, and isn't too unlike ol' Monster Magnet's Wyndorf. Overall the music sounds really nice, with a thick sound and some nice riffs coming up here and there, though there'll be a lot of "hey, a 'Sabbath riff, hey, a Krawitz riff" exclamations throughout. But once the album's over, I never find any urge to play it over again. Further listens have only brought me to the conclusion that Smoke might be heaps of fun in a live setting, but actually listening to the CD is a bit of a chore and makes me want to drag out that last Goatsnake CD instead.

The production is fairly nice, slightly muddy, but powerful enough to help the music. The whole album is stringed together by short atmospheric interludes, which I suppose is nice, though not really necessary. While the songs vary enough that you can tell them apart, there's no big stylistic leaps here, aside from some piano from time to time. But hey, I suppose a bossanova would be dreadfully out of place in the middle of all this.

There is unfortunately only one song on here that I've taken any particular liking to, and that's "Devil Down". I'm not sure quite what happened there, but this song starts out sounding like a lost Kyuss track, and a good one at that! Then leads into one of Smoke's finer moments. It does, however, lose some steam after a while. Still, this song leads me to the hope that Smoke might have something to them after all, and might write some better music in the future. But for now, I see no reason for anyone but the real stoner rock enthusiasts to bother with Smoke.

(By Øystein H-O at Satan Stole My Teddybear)

Smoke - Smoke Follows Beauty (2002)

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