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Intronaut: Valley of Smoke

Another band, another name that Microsoft Word doesn't like. Hey ho. On their blog Intronaut suggested that they were pretty sure that Valley of the Smoke," will be the best music ever recorded in the history of recorded music." Whilst I wouldn't go that far its well worth a listen and the website is well worth a visit especially if you want to know what the album's all about. It's also got a groovy picture of Leonard Nimoy so what could be better?

Dynamic would most certainly be one word to describe Valley of the Smoke, certainly when it comes to the consummate musicianship on display and there is a lot of musicianship on display but not in a, "Woo look at us, we can play," kind of way but more in a letting the songs breath kind of way.

Intronaut's music is undoubtedly groove based but that's not to say that that's the main hook as it sounds great, not too heavy but not lightweight either and if there's a better instrumental this year than the title track, I'd like to hear it. Valley of the Smoke rewards repeated listens and I suspect may well be one of those albums that just gets better and better.


Track Listing:
01. Elegy
02. Above
03. Miasma
04. Sunderance
05. Core Relations
06. Below
07. Valley of Smoke
08. Past Tense

Added: October 30th 2010
Reviewer: Simon Bray
Score:
Related Link: Band MySpace Page
Hits: 1218
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Intronaut: Valley of Smoke
Posted by Pete Pardo, SoT Staff Writer on 2010-10-30 09:50:57
My Score:

US psychedelic metal band Intronaut have been on quite a roll the last few years, and Valley of Smoke continues their upward swing. Though perhaps not quite as pummeling as their 2008 release Prehistoricisms, Valley of Smoke is a daring release, easily their most progressive and psychedelic. Hypnotic clean vocals are mixed with agonizing growls and bellows, while layers of intricate drum & bass work provide the foundation for expertly crafted guitar textures.

To say that Intronaut have probably been greatly influenced by Cynic, Mastodon, and Isis is stating the obvious, but the imprint of those three bands can be heard all over Valley of Smoke. That's not to say that Intronaut mimic these three, because this is a highly original album, but their aura is certainly felt. Multi-layered, textured songs such as "Elegy", "Miasma", and the title track just ooze with complex grooves and dreamy soundscapes, yet the band pick and choose the precise moments to jump in with crushing, death & doom metal styled guitar thunder. Prog fans will certainly love "Above", a hypnotic stunner with gorgeous clean vocals and weaving instrumentation, as well as the stellar drum fills of Danny Walker, who is one hell of a player. His partner in crime on the bass, Joe Lester, is quickly becoming one of the best in the business judging by his virtuoso work here.

Valley of Smoke is one of those albums that crosses into many genres, and just gets better with each listen. If you like the complexity & heaviness of Mastodon, and the atmospheric and progressive elements that modern day Cynic bring to the table, you need to check this one out.



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