Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Fuzz Manta - Opus II
Heavy, hippie hard rock. Right on.
There are a lot of great female-fronted rock bands emerging from the underground lately and one of my favorites is Denmark's Fuzz Manta, who add plenty of heavy blues and 70s psychedelia into the mix.
If Opus II hasn't been covered at the Ripple Effect already, then I apologize. First, it's a spectacular hard rock album by a solid band, and second, it was released early last year and Fuzz Manta already have a new one out. Hey, I can only work with what I have.
Now that I do have a promotional copy, it's time to finally show some love. On Opus II, Fuzz Manta promptly deliver eight tracks and 45 minutes of excellent hard rock goods.
"Motumann" kicks things off with fuzzy riffs and a hip-shaking groove. Sultry vocals. About halfway through the band break down into the psychedelic realm of rock before a blistering solo. Much of "Man With No Face" is up-tempo, with a Deep Purple feel, thanks to some well placed organ riffs, and the acoustic "Quiet Monday" immediately brings to mind ELP, and perhaps Led Zeppelin. This is one of my favorites, even though it's the most mellow.
It's too bad that "Lithia's Box" is only available on the cd and download versions. Not only is it one of the longest songs on Opus II, but it has some one of the heaviest, bluesy-ass riffs and I think it's one of the band's best, with killer breakdowns about five minutes in. I had thought about getting the vinyl but without this song...I don't know.
"Turn Around" just might be 'the one' for me, though. Super-heavy riffage here, man. I think Fuzz Manta bring it with best of them.
I've included a live performance of the last track, "Let Me Walk", so you can get a sense of the electricity generated by this band. The sounds quality isn't the greatest, but you can still feel the buzz throughout. I know I can.
Lene (vocals) has a captivating stage presence and reminds me of a young Grace Slick or Janis Joplin. She's as sexy as her voice, too. Pelle (drums) doesn't even use his sticks during part of his incredible solo, about four minutes into the song. Check it out. He lays them down for a few and just uses his bare hands. Awesome. Freddy (guitar), sporting his YES shirt, and Morten (bass), with his hair flying all over, both give spectacular performances.
After the live video, listen to a few more tracks from Opus II here: http://soundcloud.com/fuzzmanta/sets/opus-ii-promo/ Or check out the band's website and Facebook page. Then get your cd or vinyl copy from Kozmik Artifactz, if you don't already have it. I sure hope to be writing about the latest release by Fuzz Manta in the near future.
Peace and love.