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Torche: Restarter

There's something triumphant about this album, particularly in the way each of the songs manages to strike up a dark, fuzzed-up, stoner vibe while also keeping things rhythmically upbeat and melodic. Torche has an obvious knack for creating pop-like hooks, but this album is more about showing off more of an edge from track to track. Listen, for example, to the title track—a hard-driving eight-minute exercise grounded by a strong bass line. As I listened, I thought of the way Killing Joke managed a similar kind of repetitive power in "Eighties" all those years ago. Does anyone else hear late-80s alternative rock winding its way through this song or even this album?

Besides "Restarter," other highlights include "Loose Men," an entirely pleasurable blend of riff and boogie that will most likely accompany my workouts for the next few months. I was also impressed with the sludge-oriented track "Minions," a slower track, but no less exciting. "Undone," the shortest track, is also the heaviest. "Annihilation Affair" is also a pretty good song.

Many listeners will strike comparisons with Helmet, particularly in terms of the clean, yet earnest, vocals. There's also material here that could bring to mind bands like Queens of the Stone Age, Mastodon, Red Fang, and others. I especially hear quite a bit of mid-career Mastodon here. I'd also suggest putting this album alongside ASG's album Blood Drive and maybe even The Sword's Warp Riders.

As I said at the start, there is a triumphant feel to this release. Some of the songs are less interesting than others ("No Servants," for example, didn't make much of an impression), but there are nevertheless times when the band is on fire and simply delivers the goods.

Track Listing:
1. Annihilation Affair
2. Bishop in Arms
3. Minions
4. Loose Men
5. Undone
6. Blasted
7. No Servants
8. Believe It
9. Barrier Hammer
10. Restarter

Added: March 28th 2015
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Score:
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 735
Language: english

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