30 April 2012

[Review] Weird Totem - Caravans Of Time

Weird Totem
Formed in 2005, Weird Totem have just released their first work, a five-track EP titled "Caravans Of Time". Coming from Heraklion, they're part of a fast growing heavy rock core emerging in Crete. I believe they're the most active local scene in Greece. They organize a lot of gigs including a summer fest last year called "Down Tuned Daze". But above all (something I noticed as an observer, an "outsider") they support and help each other, putting aside their egos. This is what I call a strong local scene and I wish that even more bands will follow this "example" and stop behaving like divas not only towards the ones who like their music but also among their "colleagues" (other bands). 

And after the -harsh- reality check, let's concentrate in what Weird Totem is all about. "Caravans Of Time" generally moves in the ol' good stoner rock routes, giving us half an hour of totally enjoyable heaviness. The element of surprise is not their strongest card so they invest in quality riffage and raw power. "Voices" is EP's opener, an 8min track. Although it puts you in Weird Totem's mood, you may find it a little monotonous in the beginning. However in its second half (after the guitar solo) is really getting wicked cool!

"Green Sun" is my favorite one and definitely a highlight. Great guitar work, a couple of tempo's changes and a lot of energy.... "Spiritual Freedom" -something we're all in need of these days- is where Jim's vocals find really their way. He's having some really good ideas which should use more often...
"Haunting Dog" is the mid-tempo track of the EP and for me their weakest moment. Not that it's a bad one, just a little bit flat. "Empty Faces" is the closing song (and a bonus one), having a punk rock attitude reminding me a lot of Dala Sun's newest effort. 

"Caravans Of Time" stands in a really good level. Songs are quite catchy, groovy and drinking-friendly. The problem I came across once more is probably a matter of production. Like I mentioned a while ago in my post about Stonedaze's release, I'm missing the thickness and warmness of the groove here. Fortunately that doesn't apply in all tracks. But I was expecting something more concrete since they have two guitars. And I'd like to hear the bass a little bit "higher" (yes I'm a bass-fiend). But all these are matters of my personal taste and either I'm right or not, they are problems that may easily overpassed. Weird Totem definitely deserve a listen. They would be a fine company to a six-pack of beers (six beers in half an hour... yeap, sounds legit).

From what I know, Weird Totem are currently working on their full album which I want to believe that it will be out some time soon. Until then join them in their caravan of time...

Written by Thanos
Thanks to Weird Totem for sending me over a copy of their cd

Tracklist:
01. Voices
02. Green Sun
03. Spiritual Freedom
04. Haunting Dog
05. Empty Faces

For physical needs: Razorbleed Productions

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