Been looking forward to this one for awhile. I love new music Tuesday.
The Speed of Smoke is psychedelic sludge rock– a new musical permutation (emphasis on mutation): there’s definitely sludge here, and it’s assuredly psychedelic, yet sounds like rock, rather than metal. There’s as much hip-shaking as head banging.
I dig it. It’s NWOBHM covering Blue Cheer.
Singer James Halcrow couldn’t have more distinct vocals– something like Sabbat’s Martin Walkyier, yet his own as well: a raspy as hell, how-can-he-not-shred-his-vocal-chords type of voice. You won’t forget it. The lyrics seem to tell a tale that might make a lot more sense stoned.
Starting with opening track “Dead Wood” and continuing throughout the whole album, there’s almost a swing vibe, a rockin’-yet-laid back vibe, like Jimmy Buffet if he were sold into slavery from a young age and abused meth instead of alcohol.
Track 3, “Weakling” drops in a cool talk-box lyric that works, that sounds like a Hammond B-3 organ is talking to you…yeah: this would sound even better stoned. “Panama II” swirls and rotates over the same chord, up and down, back and forth, in a vaguely Middle Eastern vibe… the snake charmer riff….
Overall, it’s a cool, very slight evolution of the sound on Live Rock in Hell. A bit more complex, more adventurous, while maintaining the same identity.
On their website you can download the whole album in high bit-rate mp3, along with a cool digital booklet in .pdf format.
Download it all free here.