Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Blaak Heat - "Shifting Mirrors" (Album Review)

By: Richard Maw

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 13/05/2016
Label: Tee Pee Records |
Svart Records



This is a fine and interesting record, which mixes Arabian themes and sounds with the Californian desert to good effect. If you are looking for something different, this should fit the bill nicely!


“Shifting Mirrors” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1.) Anatolia
2.) Sword of Hakim
3.) The Approach To Al-Mu’tasim
4.) Taqsim
5.) Ballad of Zeta Brown
6.) Black Hawk
7.) Mola Mamad Djan
8.) Tamazgha
9.) The Peace Within
10.) Danse Nomade 

The Review:

A trio from LA, not Turkey or Syria or similar- despite what the song titles suggest- Blaak Heat mix heavy psychedelia with desert rock (California, not Sahara) and Mastodon-esque vocal melodies. A very live and reverb heavy sound compliments this approach very positively. Opening instrumental “Anatolia” positively races by while the flagship track “Sword of Hakim” will cement your attitude to the album. I personally like it a lot. Eastern melodies and rhythms mix with more Western sensibilities to good effect.

The Eastern flavour remains in “The Approach to Al-Mu'tasim” with a lovely opening intro before the track blasts in with a rhythmical groove-fest- percussion most definitely included. There are interludes such as “Taqsim” and atmospheric and cinematic trips such as “Ballad of Zeta Brown”. “Black Hawk” is more frenetic and quite weighty in places.

The Eastern Vibes continue through “Mola Mamad Djan” while “Tamazgha” takes the foot firmly off the gas for a drifting and mellow two and a half minutes. The final one-two punch of “The Peace Within” and “Danse Nomade” is similarly flavoured, with the former being a bit more straight rock and the latter being a bit less so.

This is a fine and interesting record, which mixes Arabian themes and sounds with the Californian desert to good effect. If you are looking for something different, this should fit the bill nicely!

Shifting Mirrors” is available in Europe here and in the USA here


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