Album Reviews

Sideburn – Monument IV Review

Released By : Transubstans Records

Genre : Alternative Stoner Rock

Link : http://www.myspace.com/sideburnsweden

 

Tracklist:

01. Diamonds

02. Fire And Water

03. Tomorrow’s Dream

04. Crossing The Line

05. The Last Day

06. Silverwing

07. The Saviour

08. Bring Down The Rain

09. Monument

 

When I first saw the artwork for this album and read that the genre description was based around Stoner Rock I must admit I was less than enthused. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of Stoner music for sure, but I had heard so many albums related to genre that I just wasn’t really in the mood for another one. Well…Didn’t I get a surprise! MONUMENT IV definitely has a foot in the Stoner field, but there’s s much more going on here. At times the album has a decidedly old-school SABBATH-esque Stoner vibe, and there’s also some more modern-day influences a-la ALTER BRIDGE and QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE. But the most impressive aspect of the album’s overall vibe is the inclusion of a strong nod to nineties Heavy Alternative bands like RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, ALICE IN CHAINS and definitely SOUNDGARDEN.

As interesting as this hybrid sound is though, the amount of variation here does make it very hard to get into from a cohesion point of view and my personal thought is that tightening up the sound into one that flows a little more commonly between songs would have resulted in a more enjoyable album overall. My two personal favourite tracks on this album, opener DIAMONDS and also BRING DOWN THE RAIN both feel as if they could have been written by SOUNDGARDEN in-between BADMOTORFINGER and SUPERUNKNOWN. I also really enjoyed a slower number titled CROSSING THE LINES, which features an eerie take on the trademark John Frusciante/RHCP guitar sound. The ZEPPELIN-esque SILVERWING is pretty great too.

The varied sounds on offer here certainly show how talented these guys are as writers and musicians, but just as it’s a display of skill I think it’s also what will hold the band back in the long run. Mixing up genres is fine, but an album should still have a familiar groove throughout which is the only thing that MONUMENT IV lacks. If these guys released a complete album along the stylings of the SOUNDGARDEN/ALICE IN CHAINS/RHCP hybrid show on a couple of individual tracks here I would be one of the first in the queue to buy it, until then I’ll just grab a small handful of the tracks on MONUMENT IV and maybe explore my way through the bands three previous albums.

 

Written By ZeeZee

Rating : 7/10

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