Paths to Charon
Small Stone CD/DL
Receiving an album from a Swedish retro rock band with cool artwork, a great album title and an evocative name had me salivating long before the CD had even hit the player. This is Skanska Mord’s second album following The Last Supper released in 2010.
My high hopes were quickly rewarded with the opening track ‘Dark Caves of Our Mind’, which bristles with an early ‘70s influence, infused with a doomy stoner vibe and highly original lyrics. Better still, the next track ‘Addicts’ is a hard rock duet featuring the great Ann-Sofie Hoyles of Spiders. Indeed the first clutch of tracks are phenomenal – powerful, punchy, anthemic and gritty by turns.
Thereafter the album loses its way slightly with the formulaic heavy boogie of ‘The Flood’ and rather nebulous instrumental ‘Laggasen’ but thankfully the pace picks up towards the end with the fabulous ‘Rising’ that closes things out.
So, not quite the world-beater I was hoping for but there’s still at least half of an incredible LP here that’s worth buying for the opening few tracks alone.