Hookah The Fuzz

Hookah The Fuzz

Written by: PP on 29/12/2010 17:33:36

What if Pink Floyd vocalist would've been James Hetfield instead, and on one album they decided to go for a symphonic sound in the vein of Metallica's "S&M"? The result would most likely be somewhere along the lines of Hookah The Fuzz and their self-titled debut album. Like their colleagues in Mostly Autumn that I reviewed yesterday, these Britons intrigue because of their fresh, different taken on progressive metal that sounds not quite like anyone else out there, and leaves instrumental wankery to the likes of Dream Theater to focus on more conventional and easily accessible song structures instead.

On one hand, the band writes driving thrash riffs like those on "(D)Illusion", which wouldn't feel out-of-place on an early to mid 90s Metallica release, but these are contrasted with anthemic choruses and prolonged psychedelic passages in the vein of Pink Floyd, where funky keyboards and ambiance is laid on top of some grand-scale soloing. It's an interesting combination of different styles that results in an admirably ambitious sound, and one that succeeds precisely because it doesn't overwhelm the listener. There aren't extensive instrumental-only passages where the band showcases their technical ability, instead you'll find catchy, rock/metal choruses, and atmospheric sessions that quickly transform into thrash metal-esque passages smoothly and seamlessly. It's interesting to note how the band moves from a dreamy, psychedelic sound into harsh screaming and heavy distortion on the grandiose riffs (VERY Metallica inspired, I might add) without causing incoherence at all.

Most important aspect about "Hookah The Fuzz", however, is how well structured and composed each arrangement is. The symphonies and riffs complement each other perfectly, but especially the guitarist deserves a special mention for coming up with such humongous and vibrant riffs. You don't tend to hear songs that sound this big riff-wise from debutants. That's why the overall impression of the record is so positive - if all prog metal sounded like this, a lot more people would be into it. Highly recommended.


Download: (D)illusion
For the fans of: Metallica's "S&M", Pink Floyd, Mostly Autumn
Listen: Myspace

Release date 12.09.2010

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