Shinin' Shade

Sat-Urn

Written by: BV on 25/03/2013 21:21:13

Shinin’ Shade is a psychedelia infused progressive stoner outfit from Parma, Italy. “Sat-Urn”, their new full-length release, is a follow-up to their critically acclaimed EP “Slowmosheen” from 2012.

Shinin’ Shade are obviously inspired by Electric Wizard in their heavy, somewhat fuzzy approach to the psychedelic genre. But rather than going into full-fledged psychedelic doom territory they take on a seemingly progressive edge that is reminiscent of both Tool and The Von Hertzen Brothers. The major difference between Shinin’ Shade and these two bands is the female vocals, really. The vocals are just the way I want a female vocal to be – hauntingly beautiful, yet hard-hitting. More often than not, I find that the softer female vocals have a hard time keeping up with the heavy riffing and the all-round hard-hitting soundscape. But when I listen to a track like “Keyhole/Inner Saturn” I am feeling assured of the fact that these vocals are not just there, struggling to come through. No, they’re there adding to the music and are exactly as audible as they should be – not drowned in the mix, not too soft to be noticed. They take their right place in the overall mix.

Then comes a track like “Over-Sea Nightmares” that reassures me that, not only are the vocals brilliant, the riffing is as well. The slow intro riff sets the tone for a very doom inspired track, but as much progressive music does, it soon evolves into something entirely different – a somewhat fast-paced rock-track reminiscent of the general mood of the recent Von Hertzen Brothers album in terms of the soundscape. It’s still heavy, but it retains a solid focus on melody as well. With the entry of a dual-guitar solo, I am not only admiring the riffing and the songs in general but also the overall prowess of the musicians. Despite the fact that most of the tracks on the album are ‘long-runners’ they don’t seem to be that long to listen to, due to the variations of the rhythm and the constant introduction of new riffs.

The only thing about this album that seems to bring me down, is the fact that I am having such an easy time listing ‘obvious’ influences. Yes, the album “Sat-Urn” is well-crafted and a brilliant listen, but I still feel like Shinin’ Shade haven’t really found ‘their’ sound yet. They are brilliant at handpicking elements from a bunch of influences and blending them together, but they still need to add their own distinctive touch to compound before it really takes off. Nevertheless, the album is certainly solid and I don’t see myself getting tired of it anytime soon, so if Shinin’ Shade were to improve on this by finding that certain element that only they can add to the mix, then I would like to think we are dealing with a particularly powerful album and live experience as well.

Download: Our Time and Space, Over-Sea Nightmares, Nowhere Dimension
For The Fans Of: Tool, Von Hertzen Brothers, Samsara Blues Experiment
Listen: facebook.com

Release Date 25.03.2013
Moonlight Records


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