Stonewall Noise Orchestra - Salvation (IMPORT) (LP)
Catalog number: TRANSV14
Don't be fooled by the band name, as these guys aren't all that noisy and they certainly don't sound like an orchestra, but if you crave classic '70s & '80s hard rock & metal with plenty of groove, then you've come to the right place. I get a big Clutch vibe on many of these songs, as the band mix their hard rock & metal leanings with some swampy Southern Rock on tracks like "Chemical Sky", "Dead Eden", "The Escape Artist", and "Die Die Die". "Good Ol' Black Magic" also dives right into that style, complete with some raunchy wah-wah guitars and big fat grooves. A couple of the tunes approach stoner heaviness, like "Empire" and " Beating Butterflies", but there's not a lot of that Black Sabbath influence here which is so common in bands of that style. All in all Salvation is a fun album.
Stonewall Noise Orchestra hails from Borlange, Sweden and combines groovy rock with an almost heavy metal vocal approach, not unlike MOS Generator, Wolfmother and Kill Devil Hill. During their career the band has played dozens of shows, the majority of which in Germany, which makes sense when listening to their downtuned take on traditional heavy metal. Singer Singe has a beautiful voice, comparable to Biff Byford, and songs like 'Die Die Die', 'Chemical Sky' (with Hammond), 'Monsoon Song' and 'The Surgeon and the Virgin' make for a very versatile, yet traditional album.
Stonewall Noise Orchestra have created a great mix of classic Sabbath-inspired hard rock, glam rock elements and stoner rock, changing the inclination to the various influences from song to song, which gives a varied track collection, fun to listen through and unpredictable, which I like. The melodies are the protagonists on the album, I’d say, where the band seems to have just the right touch to create melodies that feel right for the purpose and to make fascinating choruses. The album appears to be worked through thouroughly, and I can’t find a weak link among the songs; it feels like every track has been cared for in its own right and been allowed to flourish. As it should be, but you have to pull it off also, which I think the band have managed to do here.