Stonegard - "Arrows"
( Bells go Clang 33 43 753)
From Aural Innovations #33 (March 2006)
I am told that Stonegard are going to be the next big thing out of Norway. Stonegard play real true, straight up, honest heavy metal (sadly no guitar solos…). The singer often sounds like John Garcia (Kyuss,Unida, Hermano) mixed with James Hetfield. The band is clearly a big fan of Metallica and they have copied that guitar sound quite faithfully but they create some quite unique and cool tracks on this debut CD. The opening instrumental is very Nordic in many ways and goes straight into "Arrows", the title track. You can really hear the way the singer sounds like John Garcia of Kyuss. The band hits hard like Metallica but have a more stoner rock approach to their breaks and grooves in some ways. "Hunter" is very Metallica inspired. "At Arms Length" is one of the most melodic tracks on the CD. "The White Shaded Lie" has a very mysterious start before getting heavy and a riff like old Metallica kicks in. "Darkest Hour" is very much like Metallica. Acutally, these guys are the new Norwegian Metallica with no guitar solos. The CD is a beautiful digipack with a nice booklet with drawings and glossy high resolution pictures. You don't get a lot of music for your money (only 35 minutes) but some quality stuff.
For more information you can visit the Stonegard web site at: http://www.stonegard.org.
Reviewed by Scott Heller