The Re-Stoned, Russia's preeminent stoner outfit have thankfully returned to give us yet another mind numbing aural assault, with their latest effort entitled Totems. Comprised of founding member Ilya Lipkin (guitars, bass, voice), along with Alexander Romanov (bass) and Vladimir Muchnov (drums), Totems once again finds the band plowing their way through familiar sonic territory, as they combine their unique blend of ultra-heavy psychedelic rock jams, with elements of jazz and tinges of Eastern themes, that flow effortlessly through these nine, all instrumental compositions.
Once again encased in that warm cocoon glow that only an analog recording is able to provide, the songs offered up here, magically take their time to unfold, metamorphosing from the acoustic acid washed blues of "Melting Stones", to the blissed out cosmic fuzz of "Hypnosis" and the wah-wah infused workout that permeates throughout "Chakras". By the time the listener hit's the didgeridoo and Sabbath riffage on the epic "The Barbarian Hymn" and the atmospheric and trippy "Shaman", it's a one-two punch like no other. The disc concludes on a high note with "Sleepwalker" and the thundering vibrations of "Violet Harmonics". There isn't an ounce of filler to be found here as Lipkin and his crew have constructed almost an hour's worth of music, that allows the listener to just reach for the volume, simply close their eyes and let the music sweep them away.
I've said it before, but I'll say it again. For music of this nature (all instrumental, stoner rock) to be successful, you have to offer a complete listening experience that is both engaging and over and above the norm. In this regard The Re-Stoned never fail to deliver the goods. Totems stands right there, head and shoulders with the band's best work and in fact upon further reflection and repeated listens, it just might be their crowning achievement to date.
1) Fire Bear
4) Old Times
5) Melting Stones
6) The Barbarian Hymn
9) Violet Harmonics