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I completely missed out on the first three albums from the Swedish quartet and „IV Monument“ would have come and gone in the same fashion if the lead guitarist, Morgan Zoeck hadn´t pushed the album through the grapevine in my direction. The album is Stoner Rock/Doom spiced with blue notes topped with a stunning voice.
For instance, the opener, „Diamonds“ is a 70´s Hard Rock song. It´s varying with changes in tempo, doomish towards the end and a bit of finesse from Blues. It sounds unconventional and that it is -just as the whole album from Sideburn.
The second track, „Fire and Water“ is a real Doom/Stoner Rock hymn. Flat, memorable lyrics, -just like the old heroes Kiss and Black Sabbath did it- lots of sex appeal and a pinch of The Doors mix up to something that gets stuck in your head for a while. Towards the end, there´s a long guitar solo, and the chorus, with multiple voices, sounding bizarre, but it doesn´t go on the nerves.
The ballad „crossing the Lines“ begins in a classic doomish way and about half way through the melancholy turns into anger. At this point even the drummer is allowed to have his little solo. The multi-vocal chorus works well and rounds up the song as a whole.
„Silverwing“ kicks off with an acoustic guitar intro and vocals. In this track the bassist is given a chance to show what he´s made of. Towards the end, it gets a bit psychedelic and the rocking riffs compensate for the horribly cliché-filled lyrics, which are allowed here.
„The Savior“ is a hit, but there´s a feeling that you already know it.
„Bring Down the Light“ stirs up the same feelings that Mötley Crüe and Led Zeppelin do. The Hard Rock song holds insane guitar solos and Jani Kataja´s whole potential is shown here. It´s definitely a song to hear more often.
With a fantastic guitarist, excellent singer who sounds like a mixture of Chris Cornell and Ozzy Osbourne with a big portion of own personality in it, great bassist and drummer the quartet of Sideburn is a real discovery. The production is unpolished and just right for this sound. The half point minus is for “The Savior” which still is a hit, but lacks of originality.
"IV Monument" is a real enrichment for every record collection of Hard Rock and Doom fans, who appreciate a little 70´s feeling. I will definitely not miss out on the next album and you can wait for an interview with the Swedes on STALKER.cd.
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