Slow Death Lights – ‘Slow Death Lights’ In Review.
Down and dirty, gloomy, melodic and inviting Stoner Rock. We’re done, review over. If only it was that easy…
We are gathered here today to witness a dissection of the brand new album from Toronto bluesy-Stoner Rocker four-piece, Slow Death Lights. The eponymously titled – Slow Death Lights.
This debut consists of nine tracks of melodic, rhythmic and down-right addictive Stoner and Desert Rock that has left me a little unsure on what to do with myself. Like many albums of this genre the risk of monotony is always at the forefront but with this first full-length, that forefront is now well in the distance, in a different time-zone and is rumoured not to exist at all.
‘Velvet Rags’ is tight as can be compositionally and drips with a thick layer of viscous attitude while it deliberately subdues itself. ‘City Lights’ continues with this dominating gloom but does so in a more playful manner and boasts the first real lead guitar hook of the album. A hook that has you in a way that you can do nothing about.
‘The Blood To Stone’ sounds as if Social Distortion have taken a turn for the Stoner Rock as a simplistic but addictive rumble and playful lead guides you to something reminiscent of US southern-style Blues-Rock. Again, it’s the simplicity of this track that wins you over, it is what it is and is really quite proud of itself.
The title track is always important and to begin with, with the opening of this one you are worried. Luckily however, a strange Stoner Rock/Black Sabbath vibe rules the secondary riffage and the first verse before a chorus that is as dreamy as Stoner Rock gets knocks you back a step, before the stoner-sabbath rules the roost again.
Of course there is filler in every sandwich, even one with an abstract choice of herbal seasoning, but at least in this case, with ‘Ironwood Trees’ said filler is still in line with the flavours on offer.
‘Good Woman’ is very much a classic of the genre, it’s drawn out, repetitive and mildly psychedelic while ‘Valley Road’ very much gives the vision of a descending and winding valley road as you move further into the darker, heavier and more driven sound of Slow Death Lights.
There is an obvious influence from Kyuss and Queens Of The Stoneage that almost goes without saying, but alas I decided to utter the obvious anyway. ‘Peach’ is very much overloaded with a playful Blues lead and a rhythm section that is nothing but smile inducing. Slow Death Lights do nothing but enjoy themselves on this and shed more light on the more US-led elements of their sound unashamedly.
Vocally speaking, Slow Death Lights do not disappoint and it is not by chance that I have left it until now to comment on them, rather that any real comment hasn’t been required. It is on this last track, the all encompassing tie-off of this album that you realise the job this voice box has done has actually been far more than satisfactory.
‘Watermill’ takes you back in its latter parts where the band play at their fastest in a way so teasing, I truly hope to hear more of it on the next release. ‘Watermill’ ties off an album that is exactly as intended and really quite fun.
Find the band below:
- Social Media/Updates: Facebook, Twitter, Official Website.
- Music: SoundCloud, iTunes/Apple Music, Spotify, CD Baby.
- CD and Vinyl copies can be found via their website.