[Review] Sound Of Smoke – Tales

Sound Of Smoke are a German band that offers a magical mix of Heavy and soft, occult and misty, between Psychedelic and Blues Rock, Stoner and Soul sounds. After releasing an EP in 2016 that met with positive reviews, they released on February 18, 2022 via Tonzonen Records, containing 7 medium to long-length tracks. The album opens with “Strange Fruit” which immediately immerses us in the sound atmosphere of the band, with a winning blend of Psychedelia and Blues Rock traits. Isabelle’s voice is an added value for the band, giving a personal touch and imprinting her brand on the sound. In the instrumental section in the central part the guitar offers a valuable solo, and in the second part it increases the intensity closing the piece in crescendo. More rhythmic than the previous “Witch Boogie” evolves a modern boogie with mystical features, which enhance the splendid voice of Isabelle. She has excellent guitar and bass textures, with the addition of solid drumming, but the real protagonist of the track is her voice. An engaging passage of the album, with that right dose of dirty sounds, which closes by increasing the energy with a good guitar solo insert. “Indian Summer” begins with percussive drumming and vocal layering, then develops on Psychedelic sounds with that mystical touch given by the vocal. The tempo changes enrich the rhythmic session, bringing the song in the second part to a sound that enhances the personal traits of the band. Another original passage, which, thanks to the superb vocal skills and the technique of the musicians involved, guides us in this journey of over 6 minutes, pleasant, intense and profound. Rocky riffs and a massive rhythm session open “Dreamin´” which features a more aggressive vocal nuance. The musical plots combine the tradition of Rock with the original traits of the band, which manages to stand out by giving each song its own imprint. Between tempo changes and refined passages, with fine guitar inserts and a supporting bass line, the track mixes Rock energy and a touch of Stoner. “Soft Soaper” features a harder and more permeated Stoner sound, with solid srumming and a killer bass line. The vocals here have that retro touch reminiscent of bands like Coven, while the guitar offers graffinti riffs with the ever-changing rhythm between accelerates and tempo changes. Another successful passage with a darker sound than the previous ones, with insìcursioni in the Occult Rock, very engaging. “Devils Voice” is characterized by a tight rhythm, bass lines and a scratchy guitar, on which the voice of Isabelle is drawn. Enriched by tempo changes and guitar inserts that in the second part offers a valuable solo inspiration, an energetic and engaging track that combines tradition with the personal traits of the band. The album closes with the longest running track “Human Salvation” which begins with a guitar arpeggio and a spoken vocal enriched by effects. Slowly a solid rhythm session comes into play with a leading bass line and a guitar creating a blend of harder and rougher sounds with more psychedelic and lysergic ones. The tempo changes allow you to switch from softer and more enveloping sounds to others where they release all the power of their sound. The voice is dynamic and adapts well to the various situations of the piece, also enriched by instrumental sections pulled with a pulled drum. A perfect summary of their sound, with a touch of extra power, making this the perfect ending to this great album. For lovers of contaminated Psychedelic sounds this is one of the best albums released in recent years, offering a sound with a very personal character. The sound is refined, solid and engaging and each track differs from the other offering a large amount of ideas performed with technique and quality. The individual technique of the artists involved is well valued and blends well giving that extra something to the sound, raising the bar thanks also to the vocal proof of absolute level. A recommended listening, which manages to transport the atmospheres of the past to the present day, revisiting them in a modern key with a very personal touch.

Tracklist

01. Strange Fruit (05:28)
02. Witch Boogie (05:46)
03. Indian Summer (06:24)
04. Dreamin´(05:28)
05. Soft Soaper (05:15)
06. Devils Voice (04:43)
07. Human Salvation (10:12)

Lineup

Isabelle Bapté / Vocals, Keys
Jens Stöver / Guitar
Florian Kiefer / Bass
Johannes Braunstein / Drums

Sound Of Smoke |Official Website|Bandcamp|Facebook Page|Instagram|YouTube Channel|

Tonzonen Records |Official Website|Bandcamp|Facebook Page|Twitter|Instagram|

Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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