Czar Vertical Mass Grave

Czar Vertical Mass Grave

Somewhere between Queens of the Stone Age and Pantera, you'll find Czar. Sound intriguing? Well, Czar's first full-length, Vertical Mass Grave, is precisely that: interesting, off-beat, metronomic and just catchy enough to be exceptional. With the kind of steady tempo riffing of Queens of the Stone Age, while bringing the whisky-soaked vocals you'd expect from Phil Anselmo, Vertical Mass Grave is fast and fun; it's also surprisingly thoughtful, like stoner metal that's been given a shot of adrenaline. If it sounds like there's a lot going on that's because the band have a background more diverse than most metal acts. Hailing from Chicago, Czar are made-up of various members of industrial rockers Acumen Nation and drum & bass artist DJ? Acucrack. Luckily, neither of these influences play out on Vertical Mass Grave. Instead, we're somehow left with a solid robot-riff-driven album. The band tackle melodic sections, math-y riffs and post-rock-ish forays while always returning to a solid hard rock foundation. With their odd backgrounds and excellent output so far, it'll be interesting to see what Czar come up with next. (Crack Nation)