Greenleaf
Nest of Vipers


4.0
excellent

Review

by Greg Fisher STAFF
March 9th, 2012 | 83 replies | 10,158 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Greenleaf find the middle ground between infectious stoner rock tunes and slow-burning psychedelic jams on their most accomplished album to date.

Swedish heavy rock scene has been on a roll for over a decade. Aside from delivering excellent riff-oriented rock, such notable acts as Truckfighters, Lowrider and Dozer managed to come up with their own vision of music that boasts instantly recognizable features which include: dense drumming, heavily distorted bass lines, fuzzed-out guitar riffs and an aptitude for arresting melodies. All these constituents make for an admirably dense desert rock sound that distinctively characterizes so-called Swedish vibe. Borlange-based Greenleaf have always been committed to this style releasing three strong albums over the course of the last decade as well as experiencing numerous line-up changes in the process. Current Greenleaf comprise of three former musicians of Dozer accompanied by bassist Bengt Bäcke and singer Oskar Cedarmalm of Truckfighters fame. Given the fact that Bäcke has engineered plenty of Swedish stoner rock records, everything stays in the family with the quintet basically being a new incarnation of formidable Dozer.

In comparison to bluesy Agents of Ahriman from 2007, Nest of Vipers sounds grittier, punchier and more bombastic somewhat recalling the mix of the last Dozer outing with the open-air feeling of instruments, densely cascading drum beats and massive bass lines. The guitar work is appropriately groovy courtesy of immensely talented Tommi Holappa and Johan Rockner whose riffs range from boisterous to meditative. Holappa's soloing is tailor made for this kind of music striking an ideal balance between punchiness and flamboyance. The top-notch musicianship goes in line with the diverse song craft that captures the group finding the middle ground between direct, hook-driven tunes and slow-burning psychedelic jams.

A multitude of highlights includes infectious “Lilith” which relies on swift transitions making their way to a mellowed-out chorus that revolves around Cedarmalm's splendid vocal harmonies. “Dreamcatcher” proves equally irresistible with its powerful stomping rhythms in the verse leading to a superbly harmonized guitar onslaught in the song's captivating finale. In contrast, “Sunken Ships” interweaves breezy guitar work and powerhouse bass solo with enticing falsetto croons of Lowrider's Peder Bergstrand to startling effect. While these songs might be more instantly memorable, the actual selling point of Nest of Vipers lies with its lengthier brilliantly hypnotic cuts. Remarkably sustained “Tree of Life” enigmatically unravels only to climax in the vortex of rollicking riffs, while constantly evolving “At the Helm” takes its slow-burning guitar work and blends it with retro keys and Cedarmalm's most alluring vocal performance. The title track works as an icing on the cake utilizing unrecognisably vicious crooning of Dozer's Fredrik Nordin into an ambitious, progressive inclined instrumentation.

Even though several songs are devoid of apparent remarkable qualities, the strong points of Nest of Vipers clearly surpass the achievements of most other stoner rock bands working today. The album most definitely showcases Greenleaf at the top of their game serving as an epitome of everything that the greatest Swedish heavy rock has to offer.



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user ratings (27)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

album art looks psyche

Digging: Kangding Ray - Solens Arc

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

this is labeled as hard rock, does it rock as hard as Rush?

greg84
Staff Reviewer
March 9th 2012


7386 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You can find out now. The album is streaming here:

http://theobelisk.net/obelisk/2012/03/05/greenleafstream/

Digging: Hilltop Hoods - Walking Under Stars

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

listening now, diggin first groove so far

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

vox fit but need more dick and balls

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

sludgy atmosphere is kinda giving me a hard on, good job here bro, pos

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

yeah bro this is too jet for me but the riffs own and the drums need more blast beats and double bass, but this is a 3-3.5 for me

greg84
Staff Reviewer
March 9th 2012


7386 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Glad you like it. I think it's much better. The best tracks are later on the LP.

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

oh shit Tree of Life owns hard, fav track so far!!!

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

bro I'm gonna get this for sure

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

kinda reminds me of Sabbath and Electric Wizard in some parts

greg84
Staff Reviewer
March 9th 2012


7386 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Tree of Life, At the Helm and Nest of Vipers are standout tracks for me. The album gets better with every new spin. I've listened to it about 10 times since Monday.

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

awesome!

listening to Helm right now, they do the slower doom like track very well better than their other poppier styles

fuk i need this bro can you shoutbox me a valid med fire link

greg84
Staff Reviewer
March 9th 2012


7386 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I agree that the slow tracks are much better, but still there are some gems among the faster ones I mentioned in the review.

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

yeah bro rev was ace

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

holy sadus the closer is epic!!! best sound to grace my ears ina while

that smooth bass line is nachos

greg84
Staff Reviewer
March 9th 2012


7386 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah. The closer is epic! I'm sure you'll like faster tracks more in time.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
March 9th 2012


20642 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review dude. Album rules, I'll probably end up giving it a higher rating after a few more listens.

Digging: Townes Van Zandt - Townes Van Zandt

CaptainDooRight
March 9th 2012


29097 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

hell yeah JT

greg84
Staff Reviewer
March 9th 2012


7386 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks a bunch. 3.5 really seems to low. It's worth at least a 4 in my book.



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