Valley Of Smoke Review

artist: Intronaut date: 01/18/2011 category: compact discs
Intronaut: Valley Of Smoke
Released: Oct 12, 2010
Genre: Progressive metal
Label: Century Media Records
Number Of Tracks: 8
It was clear from the start that Intronaut were planning to go in a new direction with this record, and this is very evident in every aspect of the album from vocals and instrumentation, to the production itself.
 Sound: 10
 Lyrics: 8.5
 Overall Impression: 10
 Overall rating:
 9 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.5 
 Users rating:
 8.4 
 Votes:
 32 
reviews (2) 27 comments vote for this album:
overall: 9.3
Valley Of Smoke Reviewed by: unet, on october 15, 2010
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: After what I'm sure has been a long wait for Intronaut fans, their third full length album, Valley of Smoke, finally released on October 12th, 2010 in America. It was clear from the start that Intronaut were planning to go in a new direction with this record, and this is very evident in every aspect of the album from vocals and instrumentation, to the production itself. The band have managed to keep their (maybe a little less unique these days...) style of contrasting heavy and mellow passages, but this time, the riffs are sludgier, the bass is jazzier and most noticeably, the vocals are much less harsh. // 10

Lyrics: With vocalist Sacha Dunable resorting to harmonized singing a lot more than growling on this record, we see a new side to his vocal style, which I feel suits the band's musical approach really well, at times even better than harsh vocals would have. I don't have much to say about the lyrics, besides that they go well enough with the flow of the album. // 8

Overall Impression: My picks from the album would have to be "Elegy", due to its sheer brutality as an opening track and it's ability to define the musical setting of the album perfectly; "Miasma", possibly the heaviest track on the album and for being pretty much exactly what you would expect to hear from Intronaut; "Core Relations", as the mellowest song on the album, perfectly displaying the band's ability to cater to its vast stoner audience, and "Below" for being another perfect example of Intronaut's current sound. However, my absolute favourite (and most listened to) song on this album would have to be the self titled instrumental, "Valley of Smoke", a sheer display of power and skill by the absolutely incredible rhythm section of the band comprising of bassist Joe Lester and percussionist Danny Walker, and some truly awe-inspiring sludge riffage by the guitarists. For me, the high point of this album would have to be the break at about 3:20 on "Valley of Smoke". A dreamy, torpor inducing wave of music, complete with tabla and fretless bass. Another noteworthy point, this particular song also makes use of two separate drum and bass tracks. Overall, I give this album a perfect 10. It's true, there are some moments that seem a little pointless or meandering, but they serve to make the rest of the album all the more enjoyable. If my copy of the album was for some reason stolen, I would first find out who did it, forcefully retrieve my copy and then go buy a new one as well. - Rasik // 10

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overall: 9.7
Valley Of Smoke Reviewed by: PathologistRepo, on january 18, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: Man I came across this band on youtube, and I'm sure glad I did. Diving straight into their opening track Elegy, the album opens up with a crunching open string face punching explosion with some intricate drum roll bass thing, which pretty much sets the mood for the whole album on being you will have no idea whats going on the whole time. The start of the vocals takes place over a sludgy low tempo crunch riff again, with a deep growl infused war cry the vocals match perfectly. In me saying that you will have no idea what is going on is for the fact that every song is complimented with clean chord progressions and jazzy breakdowns and here and there a side order of clean vocal yells. You will have no idea what hit you when your body is twisting, and your head is banging,= to epic riffage, and then you suddenly find your self smiling and drifting off into the beautiful array of instrument harmony. heavy and mesmerizing a 10 for sure. // 10

Lyrics: Now for the lyrics I'm not sure what to do here I personaly have only skimmed through the lyrics and am aware that it is a concept album, about Los angeles. In that fact, what I was able to pick up is intriguing to me. Not blatently suggesting anything the lyrics hold a deep meaning in carefully sought after words, poetic. As for the vocals you read already what I had to say the vocals both clean and growled match the musical setting perfectly not taking anything from the instruments yet accenting it beautifully. // 9

Overall Impression: My overall impression was in awe how I haven't heard it sooner, great album, great band. As for the songs I think they are all very well crafted and stand hand in hand together, making this an even better album. BUT! The seventh song of the album and title track "valley of smoke" is the black sheep of the album. And all out instrumental of just random drum grooves and guitar foolishness, played with 2 drum kits and 2 bassists it makes for a very interesting and enjoyable ride. Hope you enjoy it as I do. First review. Cheers // 10

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