Stoner Metal/Rock for the more cerebral listener, Swiss foursome INTERCOSTAL find a sweet spot between […]
By Andrew Sifari
February 6, 2015
Intercostal - Intercostal album cover

Stoner Metal/Rock for the more cerebral listener, Swiss foursome INTERCOSTAL find a sweet spot between muscular, Blues-based Doom and the varied songwriting possibilities of Progressive music on their self-titled debut.

It's hard to know where to start here, since this album is so consistently grooving and heavy from start to finish, but opener "Hellfire Helix" is as good a place as any. The song is a nice primer for what lies ahead with its driving tempo and endless energy, treading the line between upbeat and dangerous throughout. While each song has a clearly identifiable beginning and end, the songs on the album have a very unified feel to them musically, linked together by beefy, fuzzed-out riffs that hit like a ton of bricks at times, while subduing the listener in a vivid, smoky haze at others. "Wrath," for example, lurches and grinds menacingly enough, but its approach is more passive-aggressive than the following track, "Lay Down Arms," which is leaner and heavier overall, due partly to its inclusion of vocals.

Indeed, "Intercostal" succeeds in getting its message across through its creativity and the strong execution of its instruments, so much so that it's easy not to realize that the bulk of it features instruments exclusively, though there are exceptions. "Tons Of Humans" is one of, if not THE, heaviest songs on the album, with its huge roars and slow, stately pace, while "Blood Runs Cold" similarly seethes with anger as it trudges forward.

Attitude and ability are in ample supply on "Intercostal," a strong debut from a talented band. The riffs have tremendous weight to them, while the drums, which are played extremely well, are hugely important in providing the spark that drives each song forward. The songwriting is probably the biggest strength here, as INTERCOSTAL provide enough variety to keep things interesting and engaging while not getting too fancy. It's very accessible in this way. Combined with the sheer musical power and overall quality of the material, "Intercostal" flies the flag high for forward-thinking Stoner Rock/Metal. It's definitely worth a listen for all fans of heavier Rock and Metal in general.

8 / 10


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"Intercostal" Track-listing:

1. Hellfire Helix
2. Sea's Calling
3. Barrels
4. Tools Of War
5. Wrath
6. Lay Down Arms
7. Tons Of Humans
8. Hammered
9. The End Of Knowledge
10. Blood Runs Cold
11. Sagawa
12. Aftermath

Intercostal Lineup:

Batist - Guitar
Tavern - Guitar
Fred - Bass
Mario - drums

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