Thursday 22 October 2015


One thing I never expected when starting this blog was the huge amount of music that was suddenly going to be heading my way! What with recommendations from readers, requests from bands to review their latest output and my own finds etc. plus the fact I have a family and a day job to maintain it is not surprising that every now and then something gets missed or put on the backburner for another time. In the case of Kayleth's latest release "Space Muffin" (which was released in Febuary 2015) it was a mixture of all of the above, but as the saying goes "better late than never".

For those of you not in "the know" Kayleth hail from Italy and are made up of Massimo Dalla Valle (guitar), Alessandro Zanetti (bass), Daniele Pedrollo (drums), Enrico Gastaldo (vocals) and Michele Montanari (synth). The band have released three previous albums In The Womb Of Time (2008), Rusty Gold (2010) and The Survivor (2012) and deal in a heady mix of stoner grooves laced with heavy doses of space and psych.

"Space Muffin" continues Kayleth's story with a collection of eight songs of absolute essential stoner/hard rock beamed down from the outer edges of the cosmos.
"Mountains" kicks things off nicely, no fancy intro's here just a few seconds of swooshing synth and BANG straight into the main riff. The song  rides along on an infectious stoner groove driven by a glorious Dalla Valle riff and pushed by the exemplary rhythm section of  Zanetti and Pedrollo. Over this whirlwind of rhythm'n'riffs Gastaldo adds his vocal, coming across like a cross between Sasquatch's Keith Gibbs and Monster Magnet's Dave Wyndorf, his rasp adding a real air of stoner authenticity to the bands sound. At around the three minute mark the song takes on a whole different vibe, the initial riff dropping down in to a dark doomy groove that then allows synthmeister Montanari  to take centre stage, twisting knobs, flicking switches and pushing keys he evokes a myriad of electronic effects that swoop, swirl and soar over and around a deliciously dark Dalla Valle solo. The doom takes things to a close with Gastaldo adding a a slightly echoed and distant vocal amidst a wall of synthetic noise and doomy rhythms.
The rest of the album follows very much in the same vein with songs like "Secret Place", Bare Knuckle" and "Try To Save The Appearances"  seeing the band riffing on desert/stoner grooves coloured by elements of space and psych from Montanari's synth, coming across like, the aforementioned, Sasquatch jamming with Hawkwind. It's a sound that's infectious, fun and rocks like tree in a hurricane, and if that was all this album was about I would still give it five stars but the band manage to find yet another gear on what for me are the albums two standout tracks,. "Spacewalk" and "NGC 2244", the former a mini rock opera that combines heavy riffs with narrated sound bytes and spacey effects that tells the story of an astronaut lost in the cosmos and trying to survive and the latter an instrumental journey that sees Montanari's synth and Dalla Valle's  guitar going toe to toe against a lo-fi rhythmic backdrop, dreamy and beautiful.
There are those that are gonna say Kayleth are just another stoner/hard rock band and the only thing setting them apart from the hoi-polloi is that they have a synth player within their ranks. In some respects this is true, but if you take the time to listen a little harder you will hear a band with a wealth of ideas and talent who write tight concise songs full of melodies and hooks and who are unafraid to add a little experimentation into an already tried and tested formulae.
I highly recommend you give this a listen.....

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