MAJOR STARS "Syntoptikon"
(Important Records 089, 2006)
From Aural Innovations #36 (May 2007)
I kinda burned out on the stoner-rock/doom-metal scene a few years ago...and I guess there's nothing really that new to what these folks do, but the cosmic packaging caught my eye, and then the tunes pealed my ears, so I shall testify.
"Cinnamon and Lightning" kicks things off with nice blues riffing and a catchy Ozzy-type melody from singer Sandra Barrett, who sings muchly in the style of Budgie's Burke Shelley (whom I once though to be a chick himself). The epic "Collapsing" begins with another powerful melody from Sandra before the guitar-team of Rogers, Village and Leonard star majorly in a rousing jam of wistful Iommi-licks and beautifully intertwining leads that is truly stunning. "Fake Date" encompasses another deliscious vocal and guitar-melody bridge. (Not incidentally, bassist Dave Dougan and drummer Casey Keenan round out the combo nicely.)
"Black Road" is a classic catchy heavy-ass riff, like another long-lost
Sabs outtake...whose feedback fades in a the finale barnstormer of "Syntoptikon",
belching out more classic brutal power-riffs, though the chaotic guitar-blitz
boogie is a tad overzealous...but then the reprise reprieves with the opening
riffs again. Dig it.
Visit the band record label on the web at: http://www.importantrecords.com
Reviewed by Chuck