Kavod - "Wheel of Time"
3-track EP by 3-piece Italian stoner/drone band: Kavod. Some great artwork to couple with some great music. Disclaimer: Turn the lights down and grab a smoke ready for when you play this record! You won't be disappointed.
Location: Perugia, Italy
Edoardo – Guitar/EFX,
Francesco - Bass/Vocals
Alessandro – Drums
Record: Wheel of Time
Review: “Samsara” kicks things off by introducing us to a simple-but-effective drum beat before we’re blessed with some trippy/psychedelic guitars. Nice tempo, nice groove, very musical. Reminding me of My Sleeping Karma but with added drone. Shortly before the 01:30 mark, we’re given our first taste of vocals. Turning up the drone, the vocals are more “chanting” than they are your typical vocals. Nothing wrong with that. Some people may not take to it, but it definitely adds to the vibe of the track and works very well with the instrumentation. They become more and more frantic with each repetition of lyrics, adding to the intensity of the track as they’re performed in compression to the psychedelic instrumentation. I really enjoyed this track and the sudden end around 03:00 left me wanting more.
This is then followed with “Absolution”. Very strong OM vibes right off the bat with the intro. Dark and chilling, and that becomes amplified with the vocals. Less frantic but emphasising more on the stoner/drone-quality this band brings to the table. The Bass and drum hold the song together perfectly as the guitar sprinkles texture on top, while occasionally playing off the bass.
The track then suddenly leaves much of the psychedelia at the wayside and grabs hold of the keys to a more aggressive stoner rock/drone vehicle. Like, Om-meets-UFOMAMMUT. Continuing with the pounding rhythm section driving this song like a battering ram, the vocals rear their head again and they become even more aggressive than previously on the first track. I really enjoy how the vocals are utilised on this EP. Not so much as “vocals” per say, but more as a 4th instrument. They really add something to the sound of Kavod to make it a complete package. They change throughout each song in order to fit the vibe being created by the music. Really great stuff.
The third and final track, “Mahatma” starts by building tension and anticipation with some sonic-landscaping and a teaser of bass. Again, some more great vocals are presented. Droning over the ambience and continuing to set a dark/psychedelic vibe. 3 minutes in, we’re introduced to drums and the track takes things up a notch until the song plays out in all its glory.
Verdict: Kavod have made something great with this EP. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but for those who can appreciate it, no doubt will they have a lot of good things to say about it! It has plenty of replay value, plenty of character. The record creates suspense and anticipation with ease and while it pays off, it still leaves you wanting more. Overall, a great release from this great band. Kavod were able to take many styles and influences and incorporate them all into each atom of each segment of each song, creating something truly great and truly their own. It’s almost as if this would be the theme music for an ancient being or higher power who has arrived in order to rule us all. I can’t wait to hear what they can do on a full-length release. I have zero doubts about that being something truly amazing.
FFO: OM, Tool, Pink Floyd