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Echolot : Volva

Echolot successfully mix Psych/Stoner sounds and clichés with their own new elements, creating a smooth-flowing and satisfying album.

'Volva' is the second album of the psychedelic power trio Echolot, released under the Czar Of Revelations label. This album features heavy riffs, clean trippy guitars, extended jam sessions, an excellent rhythmic section and rather scarce and relaxed vocals. All in 4 long tracks, the shortest of which is over 10 minutes.

The band comes from Basel, Switzerland. Their first album, Echolot I was a 38-minute song, structured in 3 parts, and released on vinyl in 2016. Now, with Volva, the band seems to continue where they left off, with the album track list named as 'II', 'III', 'IV' and 'V', totalling at 56 minutes.

'Volva' is within the psychedelic Stoner genre. It’s an album that is definitely not breaking new ground, but is true to its purpose: to mesmerise and captivate the listener. Some fresh elements can be found at times, such as Post-rock guitar sounds, slow gloomy doom-like riffs and chords and a hint of sophistication (the groove at the finale of 'IV' could be a part of a Post-metal album), all of which help the band to expand their sonic palette.

The band has taken great care to craft their sound and structure their psychedelic jams, balancing between freedom and form. Everything is flowing smoothly and sounds fresh. For sure, improvisation must be the basis of their writing but the material is well presented and treated with love. The jams are based on expanding themes and melodies and working on the current mood, so do not expect extended virtuosic guitar soloing. Nevertheless, the guitar leads the way as this is a power trio but mostly in a rhythmic and polyphonic way. The production of the album and the playing of the band is excellent.

Depending on the listener’s taste and preferences, 'Volva' at first may seem uninteresting or lacking dynamics but after a few listens it is obvious that this is not true. It is evolving from the first track to the last one and some really heavy riffs and good music exist. It is true that many sections are rather long, but perhaps it wouldn’t be a psychedelic album if they weren’t… As any good music, this album needs time and attention to be appreciated, and possibly the correct disposition, that of sitting quietly and enjoying some music.

If psychedelic heavy rock is your thing then you should check this band out, especially if they are playing live at your neighbourhood. This is an album that grows on you and is definitely worth listening to.

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Reviewer's rating: 8/10


Tracklist :
1. II
2. III
3. IV
4. V

Duration : Approx. 56 minutes

Visit the Echolot bandpage.

Reviewed on 2017-10-09 by Nick Kelaidis
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