Words El Jefe.
So South Africa ain’t got the same rep as say, Sweden, when it comes to producing heavy-duty, fuzzed out stoner riffarama. Certainly, there could be a hidden vein just waiting to be tapped, and I just haven’t realised it yet. And maybe, having been impressed after just a couple of listens to Tårn, the new LP by Ruff Majik, I might do just that.
Ruff Majik are a classic kinda power-trio, and in true power trio style, they all know their lines, and kick the tune right in the guts at just the right time whilst pushing the drive hard. They sound good as a band too. Sometimes playing ability ain’t everything, ya know?
Some pretty guitar lead us into ‘Schizophrenic’, which is quickly followed up with some thumping drums and an almost speed metal kind riff.
‘Gloom And Tomb’ is in many ways textbook stoner, drop-tuning and drawling vocal, but grinds on with an air of menace and purpose as well. The drumbeat is like a 1000-yard stare, and the snarl of the Johni Holiday’s guitar ripped through the air. The bass has tonnes of grunt with the occasional melodic blast. Cool lyrics too. “Living is easy, if you do it like I do”, could be a quote from HST or maybe Jim Morrison, but at the same time, blurs into the tune and makes it its’ own.
Love the sentiment. ‘I’ll Dig The Grave’. This tune has some busy riffing, and the dirgy low-end grunt that characterizes Tårn. One of my faves outta this set too.
A slight nod to Sabbath with some church bells used as an intro to ‘Dread Breath’. Drummer Ben Manchino kicks things along with his swinging, groove-laden beat, couple with some well placed rolls to break things up. Some nice riffage brings it all together.
‘Heretically Hippie’ is a more laconic song, the kind of tune that sounds great when ya head is swinging so low. ‘Speed Hippie’ is probably the weakest song, but with The King throwing in some sparse BV’s, it kinda creeps over the line.
‘Seasoning The Witch’ calls up memories of early (Lysol-era) Melvins, with its glacial pace, and sub Ozzie vocals.
The new Ruff Majik LP, Tårn, has a distinctive sound; primitive fuzz-tones on the guitar, and a dirty bass grind while the drums provide a heavy dose of sonic grunt, and once you dump them all into the cauldron, the end result is some cool stoner listening.
Ruff Majik’s Tårn LP is out NOW through Lay Bare Recordings. Order it now HERE.