Saturday, December 12, 2015

CD Review: Stoner Rockers Salute Black Sabbath And German Rockers Hedersleben Release "The Fall Of Chronopolis"

Heavy metal band Black Sabbath are considered by many to be the pioneers of the genre, so its perfectly understandable that another tribute collection pays homage to the band that started it all. At the end of October, Deadline Music, in association with Cleopatra Records released "Sweet Leaf: A Stoner Rock Salute To Black Sabbath." It features two discs worth of some of the best underground metal bands paying tribute to their gods, Black Sabbath. Beginning with a hard edged delivery of "Into The Void" by the Canadian hardcore metal band Cancer Bats, you notice some of these bands looking to add their own touch to these metal classics. American metal trio Mos Generator jam away on "Dirty Women," while Wo Fat turns "The Warning" into a ten-minute frenzy of guitar and drums. The first disc closes with the Finnish psychedelic rock band, Death Hawks turning the song "Hand Of Doom" into a sixties mind trip.

The second disc begins with the House Of Broken Promises taking on the Ronnie James Dio led Sabbath track "Lady Evil" with great results. The ideal song for this set is the trippy "Planet Caravan," which was delivered perfectly by Machuca. The songs "Electric Funeral" and "Solitude" receive the same treatment on this release, but Black Sabbath were know to rock hard. Premier underground metal band Pentagram bring the force of Sabbath's songs back with their rendition of "After Forever" and Golden Void follows suit with a spaced-out version of "Paranoid." The set closes with the actor/singer William Shatner selling us on "Iron Man" with help from guitar great Zakk Wylde and Alice In Chains bassist Mike Inez. To find out more about "Sweet Leaf: A Stoner Rock Salute To Black Sabbath," please visit cleorecs.com.

German rock band Hedersleben (named after the village where the band began to take form) are releasing their third album, "The Fall Of Chronopolis." It is based on the book of the same name that follows the rise and fall of the Chronotic Empire. The band's currently line-up features members of Nik Turner's Hawkwind as the music takes on this progressive rock feel as in the eight-minute opener "An Empire" and the spacey "Gulf Of Lost Souls." The musicianship is amazing in "The Third Time Fleet" as only whispers are needed to portray the feeling of the story, while the gentle touch of "Umbul" sets the stage for what is to come. The guitar driven rockers "Imperator" and "The Fall Of Chronopolis" showcases an edginess their music that allows them to expand their sound on this release. To find out more about Hedersleben and their new album "The Fall Of Chronopolis," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/HederslebenBand.

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