Wizard Smoke – The Speed Of Smoke …   1 comment

Alright, this is the shit right here, Wizard Smoke from Atlanta, Georgia deliver the THC sludge groove with their new album, ‘The Speed Of Smoke’. This is the follow-up to the criminally underrated ‘Live Rock in Hell’ album. Wizard Smoke come from the usual marijuana-metal influences such as Black Sabbath and Sleep but there is something very special about this band that sets them apart from the usual weed-metal crew. They are psychedelic, somewhat progressive even but there is an enthusiasm that comes through in their music that you don’t usually hear that much from the other doom plodders. Of course they have sludgy tempos and huge monolithic riffs but there is a blending of genres that come together to make the Wizard Smoke sound. It has progressive tendencies just as much as it has a early 80’s ‘New Wave Of British Heavy Metal’ vibe in places and they certainly don’t just churn out the typical dirges you would expect to hear.

The album starts with ‘Dead Wood’ that has Sabbathian groove and incredible hooks. The track sends a shiver up the spine because it is so damn heavy yet so irresistible and infectious. There is a real emphasis on the songwriting just as much as the amplifier-melting riffs. Same goes with second track, ‘Butcher’ that is less pummeling but just as infectious, this is the kind of music that makes you giddy, pure riff intoxication. Third track brings in some different elements into the mix – titled ‘Weakling’ it uses a Vocoder to give the vocals of James Halcrow, a strange but majestic vibe. It is not just gimmicks though as it really adds to the songs brilliance even though it was a killer tune already. The album’s longest track, ‘Growing’ is up next and with an acoustic guitar at the beginning, it takes the album on another slight detour. Wizard Smoke’s strength lays in the bands songwriting talents and ‘Growing’ shows the band has some real skills in composing long, engaging pieces of adventurous stoner-doom. Also every song is different from one another and seeing as a lot of stoner-doom bands use up all their ideas in one song and just merely repeat them to fill an album, this is quite the accomplishment.

‘Panama II’ is another winner and another distinctly different track, it has a Middle Eastern vibe and uses keyboards for hypnotic effect and it works perfectly. The album ends on the pummeling ‘Witches Brew’ that has more doom-laden intensity than most people could handle. This album is a decent-sized step up from ‘Live Rock In Hell’ – its more complex, more adventurous just like comparing Sabbath’s ‘Volume 4’ with ‘Sabbath Bloody Sabbath’ I guess would be a fair comparison. I think The Soda Shop described them as ‘NWOBHM covering Blue Cheer’ and I think that is pretty much on the money except I would add a slight heavy-prog thing in there as well. Apart from just great song-writing, they also have a very unique vocalist in James Halcrow and killer production so this is a no-brainer and you can get it for free – here. What are you waiting for, this is awesome……9/10
Wizard Smoke Official
Wizard Smoke @ MySpace

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Posted April 14, 2011 by doommantia in Wizard Smoke

One response to “Wizard Smoke – The Speed Of Smoke …

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  1. YEP! Just listening to this for the 1st. time and IT'S THE SHIT…

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