French trio debut with a fresh take on how classic stoner rock should be done.
So. You’ve bought a guitar, been listeing to Deep Purple and Sabbath on repeat and want to make that kinda jam, but your £100 guitar plugged into a £50 amp sounds kinda crap. What you need son is some pedals, but which ones? We’ve all been there. Fuzzcrafter have been there. Their answer? ALL THE PEDALS!
Heavily influenced by the sounds of the 70s, and weary of overproducing their recordings (as many do today), you could be forgiven for calling this ‘classic’. That is but for the fact that it’s all so fresh and exciting! Welcome to stoner rock, 2016 style.
How is the sound ?
The band define themselves as ‘an instrumental fuzz rock trio founded in Lyon, France in 2015’. And yes, if you wanted to condense this much awesome into one sentence, that’s an accurate way to do it, but there is so much more going on here. In no way would I call this “just another stoner rock album”.
For guitar players, this album might as well be listed under ‘educational material’. The three basic elements combine to show much depth and variety in sound. As the name would suggest, there is fuzz aplenty all over this thing, but what separates Fuzzcrafter as an interesting listen is the sheer scale of tones they create; all conveyed with the most groovy and detailed of riffs. “A2” for example picks up the 70s rock’n’roll theme and runs with it, while “A3” shows you just how intimidating a guitar, bass and drums can be.
You want it dirty and heavy? Check. Spacey and disorientating? Check. Clean and delicate? Oh yes.
Divided up into two sections (an A and a B side), each half moves through the great spectrum of fuzz until closing out with a gorgeous acoustic romp. These two tracks really let you focus on just how much talent is being put into the guitar work. The excellent production pans both rampaging 6 string giants into each ear while subtle drums hold you tight onto the groove.
Then it’s on with lesson number 2 of this French trio’s ‘How to Do a Stoner Band’ audiobook for the soul.
The second side drops you right back down in that dirty groove. There’s a heart felt low-fi element to this record, with the bass sound on “B1” sounding particularly gnarly and rough. It’s the longest track on the album by far and spends that time taking things to a kind of space doom plain. This is quite the trip and frankly leaves you wishing they were all this long! The B sides’ acoustic closer features what definitely sounds like some sweet cahon usage.
Can you just listen to this album for enjoyment? Yes. But the best thing about it is you kinda feel like you’re learning something, and suddenly you don’t feel so guilty for eating that whole bag of Doritos.
Why is this album worth listening to?
- The different degrees of fuzz across this album hold an inspirational quality.
- The low-fi production gives everything such grit and aggression!
- Apparently it was recorded across just two days. No seriously.
In what situation should you listen to this album ?
When you’ve got an evening to yourself 😉 It’s worth your concentration with air guitar in hand
Something particular to note ?
The artwork was done by French designer Jo Riou, who specialises in album/poster designs for the stoner rock scene. His website features work for Truckfighters, Karma To Burn and Egypt to name but a few! It’s good to remember it’s not just the musicians who make our heavy underground the glorious thing it is today. Keep up the great work Mr Riou!
Keep it groovy,
B1 - (A4 for the acoustic)
For Fans Of
Deep Purple, Truckfighters, Augustine Azul
If you don't know what those "Levels" mean, please visit this page.