Title: 7 Cremation Ground / Meditation
Label: STB Records
Release date: November 27th 2018 (digital); December 1st 2018 (vinyl)
Format reviewed: High rate mp3 promo
RIFFLORD achieved cult status with their 2010 debut full-length release, “26 Mean and Heavy”. Fast-forwarding thru eight years of struggle and ordeals, we find RIFFLORD slowly rising from grounds of Sioux Falls, South Dakota with their supremely well made sophomore album, “7 Cremation Ground / Meditation”. An album that was obsessed over, no doubts in mind. Thirteen tracks of pure, unapologetic riffs, surging out of the wall of speakers, rattling the red hot vacuum tubes, that are ready to explode in the head amplifiers! A fuzz tone so thick, so abrasive, that it made my reference speakers to physically distort, at times. The frantic organ work, combined with a solid, resonating bass guitar and an absolutely menacing drumming, offers a solid geography of textures, paving the way for the acres of harmonic distortion erupting out of the band’s guitarists interplay. Wyatt Bronx Bartlett, the founder of Rifflord, stressed over every single detail, compositional and technical. According to Wyatt, “7 Cremation Ground / Meditation” was mixed five separate times, and remastered three, resulting in a production strongly anchored in the psychedelic heavy rock of the 70s, with a sound that I will dare to refer to as the Upper Midwest Stoner! Yes, we’re talking Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa, Michigan and obviously the Dakotas! With the local cultural elements and traditions having a clear impact on the songwriting process, and not only. To expend on that, Wyatt cleverly infused the music on the forthcoming record with a lush, heavy dose of Americana: folk, blues, country – from the purely rural plains and extending well into the rust belt, this album is as American as apple pie. Yes, Black Sabbath and Hawkwind can be heard – the Brits’ influences are represented well, but not in a way which would rob RIFFLORD’s music of its authenticity. Other influences that I found palpable in the band’s new material are Detroit’s MC5 and also a slight primitive punk vibe. Coincidently, very similar influences resonated from within one other 2018 release that I have great affection for: Anguish’s “Under the Influence”.
From impending doom to Americana – the new gospel of South Dakota, RIFFLORD takes the mighty riff to the electric grave. Mind altering substances are not required, but highly recommended! 😉 Buy this album! 9/10 Emil/UHF
For all things RIFFLORD, please be sure to check out our exclusive interview with Wyatt Bronx Bartlett, here.
EXCLUSIVE TRACK PREMIERE: RIFFLORD – Electric Grave
9/10 Epic Storm
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Used by permission. © 2018 by Emil Chiru / UHF