7   +   8   =  

Thermate – Redshift City (Argonauta Records)

The Sabbathian riffs driving Redshift City’s epic opener Eyes Of Jupiter offer an early, encouraging insight into Thermate’s raison d’etre. This is a band on a mission to mine metal’s historical core, revisit stoner rock’s heyday and give modern day heroes Graveyard a right old run for their money. It’s a pounding mix of diverse musicality that nevertheless sounds reassuringly natural.

Arthur Thure’s vocals are perfectly suited to wringing every last drop of emotion out of the Finnish quartet’s finest work: Thermate’s swaggering frontman boasts a throaty range to die for and rarely delivers anything less than 100 per cent fury. Trading top billing with twin guitar threat Mikko Väätäinen and Juuso Honkanen, Thure coasts through Redshift City and it’s difficult to believe this is the band’s full-length debut.

There’s an urgency about standout track Soliloquy that suggests Thermate already have an eye on the future. Thure describes ‘floating through space’ and there’s almost a Hawkwind-esque sense of the unknown underpinning a song that’s both commercially accessible and progressive to the core.

Thermat might trade on the ‘trad metal meets stoner rock’ strapline and yet, at the same time, this is a band that genuinely fears genre classification. It’s best to approach Redshift City with an open mind and a sense of adventure – lose yourself in Soliloquy or the self-explanatory Kaleidoscope (replete with its Spaghetti Western-style intro.) and the reference points swiftly become blurred.

This is Thermate. This is all you need to know.