Thursday, 11 February 2010

OBLIVIOUS - Goons And Masters (CD)

Transubstans Records’ modus operandi is too release bands with a strong seventies vibe. They also showcase the great variety that actually existed in this blessed era, from the psychedelica, the acid rock to the heavy riff oriented hard rock. My favourites are of course the latter. The label’s latest combatants go under the collected name of Oblivious and their debut album is entitled “Goons And Masters”. If you played opener “Ego Boy” not telling me the release year and nationality of the band, I don’t think the answer would have been 2010 and Sweden, but more likely late seventies and USA. Ok, they don’t sound too way off from some of the other current stoner bands, but they do have some really nice personal qualities that I dig. Especially the cool harmony vocals and the great variations of “Red Eye Goon”, at times with a touch of Bigelf. This band really stands its ground in comparison with Swedish colleagues like Dozer, Witchcraft, Graveyard etc. Oblivious are a bit heavier and more riff-driven. I also really dig Iska’s vocals, which is not your average stoner singer, even though he has a pretty low down and gritty touch to his voice. One track that sounds a bit more like your run of the mill up-tempo stoner is “Kickin’ And Screamin”, but it fits well into the rest of the material. “Bring It On Me” reminds me a bit of early Grand Magus, which is great in my book. The variety of the album also shows in tracks like the long and at times folk-influenced “Dead End Night” which spans over a wide variety of styles and sounds. A killer track, indeed!! This track also showcases the bands ability to really crush! I really love the mix of this album! There are hints of vintage Sabbath, touches of Bigelf, a bit of Grand Magus, but the mix becomes quite their own. It’s brutal but still ambient and quite analogue. Just take the guitar sound on “Blind Faith” which would scrape the skin off your face if you stood too close to the speaker. One of my favourite Transubstans releases, I must say!
/Janne Stark

Genre: 70s hard rock/Stoner
Label: Transubstans
Year: 2010
Country: Sweden

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