Life is full of surprises. Former The Haunted frontman Peter Dolving wouldn't have been one of my likely candidates to be behind one of 2017's best stoner rock releases so far, but lo and behold, he is, with this debut release “From Ashes” from brand new outfit “IamFire”.
Despite being the work of a former thrasher, there is little of The Haunted's signature sound here on this LP. “IamFire” is not just another derivative side project, and this isn't just angered riffs and enraged vocals – this is psychedelic melodies, sweeping hooks and lumbering songs that give you time and space to breathe and take it all in. Of course he hasn't done all this on his own - Dolving has teamed up with Mikael Ehlert (Blood Eagle) on bass, Ulf Scott Hansen on drums and guitarist Peter Ohlsen, with the man himself on vocals, and together they make a gloriously groovy hour of solid stoner rock and roll.
Album opener “Magpies and Crows” will instantly reassure you as to the quality of the recording being spun with its excellent opening riff and Dolving's cleanly sung and doomy vocals. “Did You Find Your Name” follows with its desert rock vibes, heavily reminiscent of Kyuss, yet somehow also slightly Scandinavian in its brooding darkness. This is the soundtrack to wandering the Nevada desert while high on mescaline and wondering how you will ever find your way back to the airport to make that plane back to cloudy Copenhagen. The album continues in much the same way all the way through its full fifty-seven minutes, and it's difficult to pick stand-out tracks here – the quality is consistent throughout. It's just one big slab of thundering riffs, mind-bending stoner vibes and lumbering rhythms
Fans of Kyuss, Kylesa, Black Sabbath and Electric Wizard should check this out. From Ashes is a melting pot of influences and I can hear all of the above mentioned bands in this swirling mix of molten metal. IAmFire have a really promising debut on their hands here, and if they can keep this up with their future releases then they could become a big thing in the somewhat crowded stoner rock scene. Despite all the competition out there at the moment from other psychedelic rock outfits, this is well worth the listen. From ashes Dolving et. al. have risen – and they are on fire.
'From Ashes' is available digitally right now through Bandcamp. Pre-orders for all other formats being taken now. Click here to buy