The whole band worshipping thing is an interesting phenomenon. On one hand you have a slab of music from a different band who resembles a band who you love; but on the other it can almost be an extension of the albums you’ve heard from the band that paved the way for all their worshippers to follow. This necessarily isn’t a bad thing if done right, but in order for the effort to really stand-out it has to have a feel and a life of it’s own to say, “HEY LISTEN TO ME OVER BAND XXXX!”. Fortunately for southern-stoners Gypsy Chief Goliath they have spiced up that revered Clutch formula and created an album that has a life and an attitude all of its own.
I’ve always found that stoner metal and southern rock have always gone hand in hand and are a perfect union of complimentary ideals. Both sounds are mainly built around those foot stompin’ riffs and those head bobbing grooves. Gypsy Chief Goliath bring both those elements to the table in spades. Every song throughout the course of “It’s A Walk In The Mist” have you feeling the power of the riff and compel you to grab that icy cold hoppy beverage and light up a herbal cigarette while you are whisked away into a utopia of groove and guitar riffery.
Another integral element to this almgamation of styles is an incredibly strong vocalist. The importance of a strong vocalist cannot be stressed enough. Simply put the vocalist has to essentially drive the songs along, while fighting neck and neck with the guitar for the forefront of the sound. Al “The Yeti” Bones has been involved in the stoner metal community for quite some time. The Yeti has been apart of many tours throughout the years and has been a part of many notable bands, his rap-sheet is as long as The Trans-Canada Highway, and his experience definitely shines through on this record. The Yeti consistently shows his prowess and rises to the occasion on every song, and drives them home … every time. He’s the type of guy you curse at profusely for getting those lyrics cemented in your head. He’s able to execute the gruffer vocals with ease and then do a complete one-eighty and execute the cleaner passages with grace and majesty. You really couldn’t ask for a better vocalist, he’d make Neil Fallon proud.
As I’m sure you’ve realized thus far that, It’s A Walk In The Mist is a very dynamic album. With it’s many influences, it would be almost impossible to list them all in an effective matter; but there is yet another element that is noteworthy, and that’s the harmonica courtesy of Brodie Stevenson. The harmonica is one of those things that has to be used perfectly otherwise it totally detracts from the sound, as with all things Gypsy Chief Goliath, you guessed it; executed just right. His input compliments the bluesy nature of stoner metal so well and rounds out the sound effectively. To see what I mean, be sure to listen to the last track “St. Covens Tavern”.
Overall with the melting pot of influences and musicianship that is on display here, Gypsy Chief Goliath is destined for big things. With The Yeti’s experience, his excellent vocals, the harmonica, and musically proficient band; there really isn’t any reason why these guys aren’t selling out venues all over the world. Do yourself favor, and let this album invade your soul; it’s the sort album that treats the ears and warms the heart with its honesty.