The Graviators
Motherload


4.0
excellent

Review

by Voivod STAFF
May 15th, 2014 | 27 replies


Release Date: 03/28/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Blues driven heavy/doom rock from Sweden that’s as cozy as a mother’s hug.

Ever since humans became aware of their existence, they strived at overcoming every boundary relevant to it. Gravity was probably the most obvious example in that respect. From the myth of Icarus and the godless endeavor of the Wright brothers during the 19th century, to the achievements of extraordinary athletes such as Michael “air” Jordan or Nadia Comăneci, mankind managed to harness the force responsible for its survival in the first place. Since 1970 and the divine intervention (sic) of Black Sabbath, rock followed the opposite way, as it was deemed with the much necessary g’s it previously lacked. On par with the English grand masters, Swedish lads The Graviators have been refining their heavy/doom rock since 2009 and the self-titled album. Their 2014 full length offering, titled Motherload further establishes them as yet another credible outfit within the aforementioned musical niche.

The new album refrains from reinventing the wheel, and that’s just about its sole flaw. The sound is as live and “thick” as it can be, as the album was recorded live in the studio, on analog tape. Musically, the blues/doom metal spirit of the first 3-4 Black Sabbath albums has been merged with the groove and instrumental wizardry of outfits such as Deep Purple. As a result, The Graviators tend to improvise a lot. Almost all album numbers have segments deviating from the main song tempo, leading to either mesmerizing blues rock jams (“Lost Lord”, “Druid’s Ritual”) or a “wrong” impression about a song’s main style (“Tigress of Tiberia”). Overall, the album has a good replay value, despite its extended temporal duration, and makes for a long but pleasant journey upon the completion of each listening session.

The discrete progressive rock character of Motherload is also due to the great instrumental skills of every band member. Vocalist Niklas Sjöberg gives out his soul by singing about fantasy themes (“Druid’s Ritual”) or the world political/economic crisis (“Narrow Minded Bastards”, “Corpauthority”). Guitarist Martin Fairbanks is a true master of his sound in his rhythm, and most importantly, his lead guitar improvisations, which reveal a quality found only in a handful of his peers and in veteran musicians. As for the rhythm section of Bergman/Holm, it firmly holds its keep with respect to the doom-y sites of the album, while it sounds awesomely energetic on the up-tempo hard rock segments of the album (check “Tigress of Siberia”), which form an island in the middle of a ‘70s doom/blues rock ocean. In conclusion, Motherload is yet another piece of evidence for the upward course of The Graviators, who don’t seem to lack in anything, compared to more established retro rock outfits. Let’s hope that they will hit the road for as many dates possible, they deserve that much.



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user ratings (15)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2014


6287 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Album stream: http://www.terrorizer.com/news/streams/stream-graviators-new-album-motherload-terrorizer/

Constructive criticism is most welcome.

Digging: Madred - Supersonic Brainfuck Overdrive

Emyay
May 15th 2014


5974 Comments


good review. i don't think this would be up my alley though.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2014


6287 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Fair enough, and thanks for the feedback :-)

Emyay
May 15th 2014


5974 Comments


you took out the word 'hybris' ? i actually thought that was a pretty cool use of the word. i thought it was incorrect at first because i've only seen the spelling 'hubris'.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2014


6287 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I took it out because the word has a negative meaning and didn't not coincide with the point I wanted to make.

Have you checked the album a bit? The stream is no longer available for Greek ips, but I managed to listen to it enought (while it was active) so as to order it.

Emyay
May 15th 2014


5974 Comments


listening to the first track right now. pretty sweet actually. kind of reminds me of the sword mixed with a little beardfish, and obviously the sabbath influence is there

Calc
May 15th 2014


12305 Comments


"Gravity was probably the most obvious paradigm in that respect."

is gravity a paradigm? I get how someone could argue that its a law/theory blahblah, anyway the word sounds weird there to me is all.

Digging: Mr. Oizo - The Church

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2014


6287 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Okay I used the word "example" in the text. With the addition of an "a" vowel to the word "paradigm" you get the Greek word "paradigma" which is translated as "example" in English but it can also mean "model" or "theory", as you said. That's my two cents on the matter :-D

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
May 15th 2014


16114 Comments


narrow minded bastard very sabbathy innit

Digging: H.P. Lovecraft - H.P. Lovecraft II

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2014


6287 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This is right up your alley mena

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
May 15th 2014


16114 Comments


yes listening to it right now sounding good

manosg
May 15th 2014


6540 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Great review man.

I only managed to listen to "Narrow Minded Bastards" and it's very solid. I'm not too fond of the vocals though. Not that they're bad or anything but they sound a bit generic and they could have been louder in the mix I think. But that's just judging from one track so I might be wrong.

Digging: Witchfynde - Give 'em Hell

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
May 15th 2014


16114 Comments


great riffs but i much prefer when they go more psychedelic and move a bit away from the early sabbath sound, great production on it too

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2014


6287 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

The band has it both ways mena and that's where the album excels.

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
May 15th 2014


16114 Comments


yeh it's a good mix, this sort of stuff is often entertaining for 1 listen for me and i never come back but this one deserves repeats

Mad.
May 15th 2014


4070 Comments


This sounds like it could be awesome as long as it doesn't fall too far into the drudgery of Sabbath-worship territory. Great review, would pos

BlackLlama
May 15th 2014


1706 Comments


Will check this. I've been listening to so much weird stuff lately, why not add more :D

CaptainDooRight
May 15th 2014


30252 Comments


swee Voivod!

Dr7
May 16th 2014


129 Comments


Nice review Voivod.

Some really cool stuff on this album. I like their longer songs most and as you mention, the improv guitar work is fantastic.

Digging: Bloodbath - Grand Morbid Funeral

BlackLlama
May 16th 2014


1706 Comments


I kinda like the vocals in a way. They have a little more of a glam edge to them than most stoner bands.



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