ALBUM REVIEW: Miss Lava – Doom Machine

Let’s think of 2021 as the year that will reveal the ultimate artistic expression of all creators out there and, personally I am very excited with what the year promises pertaining to music releases especially in Metal. The year starts with the right foot with this release by Portugal’s Stoner Metal band Miss Lava and their fourth effort Doom Machine (Small Stone). This album explores how psychedelic and experimental sounds mix so well with Stoner Rock/Metal, with passages that go straight from heavy riffs into spacious soundscapes that will transport you somewhere else in the cosmos.

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Klone-Here Comes the Sun

klone album cover

Klone is one of those bands that is difficult to categorize. They originally branded themselves as a metal band but with each new release of music stray further from what one may consider metal to be. Their latest album Here Comes the Sun (Klonosphere/Pelagic Records) is their most progressive and psychedelic sounding yet although it still holds on to some metal sounds.

It is interesting that the band decided to name the album after one of The Beatles’ most well-known songs considering they do not cover a Beatles song. However, it does tell the listener that they should leave their idea of what metal is behind and prepare for a more surreal or ethereal sound. Overall, the album is mellower than what one would expect from a metal band.

Opening track ‘Immersion’ throws some saxophone in to show that Klone is not one’s ordinary band. The instrument could have sounded out of place in a metal band but instead blends in well enough to come as a nice surprise. Most of the album stays on the lighter sounding side of things, but eventually becomes more epic. A prime example of this is ‘The Last Experience’ which sounds like something grand is coming to an end.

Other highlights include ‘Nebulous’ and a cover of George Gershwin’s ‘Summertime’ from Porgy and Bess. What makes ‘Nebulous’ great is how it encompasses everything that the album, and arguably the band, is about. There is a balanced blend of psychedelic and heavy metal sounds. ‘Summertime’ is one of the most covered songs from musical theater, but Klone is able to own it. The sadness that is not evident in some covers of the tune becomes clear in Klone’s interpretation. The band deserves much credit for being able to pull it off and for creating yet another album that shows off their evolution.