Awooga – Alpha – Reviewed

Tam Ali – Bass/Vox
James Borrowdale – Guitars
Taran Ali – Drums

Awooga – a term that denotes a number of different things, taken from a range of popular culture references and a word that’s just so damn cool. The band from Sheffield though give the word brand new meaning with their new EP “Alpha”. Awooga is heavy. Awooga is dark. Awooga is f*****g brilliant.

The Sheffield three piece describe themselves as psych, prog and stoner rock..yep you read that right, stoner rock..Immediately after seeing that it made me want to listen to their new EP “Alpha” to understand what this crazy new genre meant. What I found out after listening to the four tracks the band released is I am a huge, huge fan of stoner rock and need to hear more from this band.

The opening track almost blew my entire brain structure to pieces. It’s so deep and grungy yet the vocal and overall vibe is as explained, entrenched in psychedelic notes and I can only describe it as..stoner rock. “Thief” has every component I’d expect from a heavy metal song, whilst also everything I’d expect from a Kate Bush number; it’s an incredible amalgamation of sounds that left me feeling a whole new way about music and what could be done.

As track two “On Intermission” fades in slowly I was at first unsure how they could match their opener. What Awooga have done with this track though is simply stunning. At 7 minutes and 18 seconds the song is quite an epic. Up to about the two and a half minute mark, it feels like Radiohead, but darker and just as you’re dozing off into a psychedelic trance, the band kick in the noise and raise the track to dizzying heights. It’s a marvel, it’s hypnotic and relaxing yet brash and heavy and it’s one of the best tracks I’ve ever heard.

Although the third track is much more typical of a metal come rock track it still has its place on the EP and stands out for it’s more vocal oriented sound compared to the other three. Not a highlight for me but nevertheless a great song.

The final track leaves me thinking “I wonder what Awooga are capable of with a bit of commercial support”. If “On Intermission” was an epic, “Faultline” is monumental. It’s a genre defining track that takes you to so many places it mentally drains you (in a good way). From huge metal riffs, to more rock n roll vocals, to psychedelic lead guitar (even I don’t know what that means) the song combines everything that is right about “Alpha” into one 8 and a half minute spectacular that is simply stunning.

Awooga are a band on the rise, a band that can challenge everything we know about music and I can only commend them on what they have achieved so far with “Alpha”. I highly, highly recommend you buy this on flame red vinyl and turn it up to the max; close your eyes and be transported to a world of metal, psych and stoner rock in a way you never thought was possible. Available from http://www.awoogaband.com/shop.

Catch the band next Saturday in Barnsley headlining The Underground https://www.facebook.com/events/597388393804414/

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