Fuzzy Charts: Every month we write about your favorite albums!
We brought back the Fuzzy Charts to make a monthly poll of the albums that left a mark in YOUR ears. If you’re not familiar with it by now, the votes are happening in our Fuzz Temple group on Facebook, every beginning of the month, for the releases of the previous month.
Even more than the last few months, we’ve been super busy, and there were also a bunch of priority articles, hence the late timing of this. I’m still not so convinced by this timeline, but somehow it looks like it had a good impact, please tell us what you think in the comments, here, or on our socials, I will never say this enough, but these Fuzzy Charts are for you, and about you, so your feedback can only help us make it better.
Following our drive from the last months, this article is a collaborative work from the team, with the same guys as last month, Mr. Cromlech, Mr. Fuzz, Mr. Momo, Mr. Witchfinder, and myself. This one has been a bit challenging since we published almost no reviews in the past two months, only one of these releases has been reviewed on More Fuzz.
You might have gotten used to it the last few months, so once again, I made a Spotify Playlist with all of these cool albums. Head over there for almost 6 hours of the best of September’s fuzzy music!
We want to see which albums really got into the audience’s ears and if we missed some gems. That’s also a good way to inventory everything that went out in a month, giving some light to some records that might have gone unnoticed otherwise.
Like last month, we are launching the votes for last month at the same time, strangely, even with a month of votes, the numbers were not higher than usual. The votes for November have just been launched in the Fuzz Temple group, so please head over there (or click on the link below) to cast your votes for your favorite albums of last month.
You can vote for as many albums as you want to, and also add some if you don’t find them in there, you only need to respect one rule:
The albums need to have been released in the last month (so November for this one).
Don’t hesitate to share this post or the poll directly because the more we are, the better it will represent what we all listened to this month!
Here are finally the results of this poll, for the month of October, enjoy!
Top 10 Albums of October 2021
Ah! Maybe because you had one month and a half to vote, or maybe there were better albums in October, but the numbers definitely went up this month, making an interesting ranking, check it out 😉
9 ex–æquo: The Gluts – Ungrateful Heart (7pts)
FFO: Hüsker Dü, A Place To Bury Strangers, Dead Vibrations
The Gluts are an Italian quartet that blends rabid noise rock, psychedelia, and a healthy dose of post-punk and with their new album titled Ungrateful Heart, they have truly outdone themselves in terms of this formula. With a total of 10 tracks, the band introduced a new dimension to their music that sees more groove and rock and roll spirit than ever before while maintaining their signature metallic tone and maddening vocals.
Though the whole album feels abrasive and relentless in its tempo, The Gluts made sure to diversify their arsenal and paid careful attention to composition by introducing more breathing space and calmer passages, a perfect example of which is the song Leyla, Lazy Girl From The Moon that comes right in the middle of all the fiery blitz. If you’re looking for a noisy power trip with a romantic twist to close this year with a blast, this is possibly your best chance!
Blurb by Mr. Witchfinder.
9 ex–æquo: JuJu – La Que Sabe (7pts)
FFO: GOAT, Lay Llamas, Ratatat
Gioele Valenti is a crazily talented multi-instrumentalist from Sicilia, previously known for playing in Lay Llamas, or Josefin Öhrn & The Liberation. He’s been quite active these past few years with several of his projects, and after leaving us to wait quite a while since his 2016 solo debut self-titled, he recruited two members of GOAT to complete JuJu‘s lineup and launch a new dynamic for the band. JuJu got three releases out in the last two years, one album in 2020 that I somehow completely missed out on, a Fuzz Club Session last August, and now this album, released on Weird Beard Records.
As much as I really loved the afro-inspired debut, I don’t mind the drastic change in the sound operated in the last few releases, giving us another taste of Gioele’s multifaceted inspirations. On this album, JuJu keeps some of their roots, especially the krautrock foundations, but they took a really modern direction, including some electronic and dark-wave vibes, making it a really enticing and dynamic record to chill on, letting it slowly uplift your mood. It’s not that it’s especially positive, the sound is still quite dark and mellow, but the energies at play here will gently envelop you in a warm and comfy trance-inducing fog as Valenti has the secret (cf. Lay Llamas) and the drums and bass should progressively take over, making you nod in appreciation, while you feel the good vibes spreading inside. La Que Sabe is pretty consistent throughout, though each song explores a different path, making it a really interesting and diverse journey to embark on…
7 ex–æquo: Wooden Fields – Wooden Fields (8pts)
FFO: Siena Root, Three Seasons, Witchcraft, Kamchatka
Fans of good ol’ 70’s rock rejoice because there’s a new supergroup in town and it’s called Wooden Fields! This Swedish trio features the singer/guitarist Sartez Faraj (Three Seasons, Mouth Of Clay), the bassist Sam Riffer (Siena Root), and the drummer Fredrik Jansson Punkka (Witchcraft, Angel Witch), and let me tell you the result is as good as you could expect from these 3 experienced musicians!
The 7 tracks of this self-titled debut album are all of the highest caliber, bluesy and groovy af with a delicious vintage sound, each member giving the best of himself. Sartez’ recognizable voice combined with his crazy guitar skills (oh my god those solos!), Sam’s iconic bass lines which are guaranteed to make your head move like a bobblehead, and Fredrik’s tight and varied play-style bringing a ton of energy to the overall sound. Talking about energy, most of the songs are in the upper range of the Temperature Level, promising some boiling live experience, I really hope a tour is scheduled soon!
Blurb by Mr. Fuzz.
7 ex–æquo: Blackwater Holylight – Silence/Motion (8pts)
FFO: True Widow, Hangman’s Chair, The Well
With « Silence/Motion », the ladies of Blackwater Holylight went even further with showing off their emotions than their previous album from 2019. Definitely, a darker, more melancholic album that seems to reflect some global and more personal state of mind.
As a big True Widow fan, I found this album has a similar slow-paced shoegazey vibe. Though the work put into the compositions, the atmospheres, is more complex, where light and shadow often face each other inside a single song. More space is given to acoustic guitar and the keys overall, though the low-end fuzz guitars are still here and contrast very well with the beautiful ethereal vocals of Faris and the keys of Sarah. We even have some black metal growls in « Every Corner » the last song of the album!
A beautiful album if you are ready to be submerged by strong emotions. I feel it’s an appropriate one for the winter, to listen to while cocooning in your big blanket by the fireplace while the snow is pouring outside.
Blurb by Mr. Fuzz.
6: Snowy Dunes – Sastrugi (9pts)
FFO: Kadavar, Graveyard, Siena Root
Sastrugi is Snowy Dunes third album, 4 years after Atlantis. The Swedes are still delivering the psychedelic stoner with a heavy 60s influence we’ve grown to know them for. On this latest album, they added a bit more energetic vibes than on the previous ones, with faster rhythmics and catchier songs, but also less room for soli and jams.
The Swedish Quatuor took the time to work on their sound definition, adding some new ideas in the mix, but especially refining the sound in itself, making this record a classy step forward from their already great two first albums.
Blurb by Mr. Momo.
5: Jointhugger – Surrounded By Vultures (10pts)
FFO: Saint Karloff, Yatra, Domkraft, Elephant Tree
With two LPs and one EP in less than two years, you can consider this Norvegian trio quite prolific, and it’s quite welcome, as the doom they craft is particularly refreshing. The Fat level is cranked to the top, with a sound thick as fuck, perfectly fitting their pachydermic riffage.
You can feel a foundation of bluesy vibes, buried under all that fuzz, piercing through here and there, especially in the calmer moments, where the reverberated voice harmonies also join the party to magnify it. The Norges got a perfect sense of timing, letting things unravel, building up, slowing down, playing with tension, and knowing exactly when to release their full power, crushing us in orgasmic breakdowns.
I got completely taken by surprise by this record, digging into my skull from the first notes, hooking me throughout the whole course with killer passages of pure beauty or crushing heaviness, this is so cathartic, and I could only hit play again when I was done.
Blurb by Mr. Stone.
4: IAH – Omines (11pts)
FFO: Mother Engine, Stone From The Sky, Weedpecker
The Argentinian trio follows their successful path of producing high-quality instrumental Heavy-Psych with this new album. Often alternating between mellow, melodic passages and the more crushing and doomy riffs, those 8 tracks flow very easily. And this is not an easy task to do.
IAH take their time to build up their songs, the transitions are well-crafted, and it’s often when it’s « unnoticeable » that you recognize true talent in this kind of expansive music.
The last track also features two members from Spaceslug on the vocals, a welcome addition for the longest song of the album ticking at 14 minutes, a dark omen that will mesmerize you until the end of time…
Blurb by Mr. Fuzz.
3: Monolord – Your Time To Shine (15pts)
FFO: Ufomammut, Dopelord, Moth Gatherer
Where Monolord walks, desolation and doom ensue. The Swedish monolith’s new release titled Your Time to Shine caught me off guard as I felt like the album wasn’t promoted all that much and it just appeared out of nowhere. To my surprise, it resonated and stuck with me more than I’d expected as the composition and the general atmosphere feels complete and reminiscent of the confusing times we live in.
Amidst all the fuzz and feedback there’s a sense of melancholy and frustration translating to a journey through both restless and peaceful waters, depending on the track and its specific segment. For instance, the closing song Sirens of Yersinia offers a bit of both worlds by starting off with a short-lived blast only to swiftly retreat to a dormant state and then come back with hypnotic heavy riffage soon after. However, tracks like I’ll Be Damned and Your Time to Shine are perhaps more straightforward and one-dimensional as they burn and soothe the soul accordingly.
Summing up, Your Time to Shine is a surprise to be sure but a welcome one. Monolord surely knows their heavy ways and showed perhaps a more vulnerable and emotive side of their take on classic doom metal here. An album not to be missed.
Blurb by Mr. Witchfinder.
2: Giöbia/The Cosmic Dead – The Intergalactic Connection: Exploring The Sideral Remote Hyperspace (19pts)
The Cosmic Dead: Bandcamp – Facebook – Instagram
FFO: Hawkwind, Vibravoid, Pink Floyd, The Mirrors
The most exciting split of the year! Italian psych masters Giobia join forces with the most energetic stoner-psych band this side of the galaxy, The Cosmic Dead, from Glasgow, Scotland.
The first 3 songs of the split are from Giobia, all of them very different: the first song is an instrumental, classic space rock piece, the second a cover of ‘Julia Dream’ by Pink Floyd, and the third one an instrumental piece also. All of them are marked by a dominant keyboard.
Then comes a 20 minute mastodon by The Cosmic Dead, also instrumental, starting slow and ending in furious saturated noise, much more aggressive than Giobia’s songs.
A great collaboration between two heavyweights of the European stoner psych scene, not to be missed!
Blurb by Mr. Momo.
1: Green Lung – Black Harvest (24pts)
FFO: Coven, Clutch, Salem’s Bend, Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats
These guys really took me by surprise this year with their amazing blend of heavy rock and doom metal. So I’m not surprised that Black Harvest got the most votes from our followers of More Fuzz.
There’s no shortage of awesome riffage & guitar solos here just like in their debut Woodland Rites. Here and there an organ comes in riding along the melodies played by the other guys and I think it changes the vibe between 70s rock and a more modern occult rock done by Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats. Vocally Tom Templar also gives those Uncle Acid vibes but also is a bit reminiscent of Ozzy Osbourne’s holy voice.
What caught me most off guard though was the Type O Negative influence in the chorus of ‘Graveyard Sun’, a very well-done influence mixed into their sound which became the icing of a cake instead of sounding out of place.
While Green Lung keeps the music alive and loud throughout this album it becomes all more special for the closer ‘Born To A Dying World’. Here the beautiful calm parts give me a churchlike vibe and the heavier parts get all the more intense and together with a grand guitar solo this song couldn’t have been anything else than the album closer.
Blurb by Mr. Cromlech.
You can also check out Mr. Void’s review of this album right here.
Thanks for reading and Keep it Fuzzy!
Mr. Cromlech, Mr. Fuzz, Mr. Momo, Mr. Stone, Mr. Witchfinder & the More Fuzz Team