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ELDER (s/t) LP

First this album has been released on MeteorCity in 2008 as CD edition, but all vinyl junkies will rejoice, because here we have the heavy 180 gr. vinyl edition in heavy gatefold sleeve, limited to 500 copies. Thanks again to Electric Earth Records for making it possible and that 2009 still remains a good year for heavy doom-soaked releases. All those who just can't get enough of Sleep-infected Black Sabbath worship should pay attention to US-band ELDER, or to be more precise, it's the most obvious influence in their heavy fuzz-driven sound. However, ELDER manage it to incorporate more influences into their songs. 'Ghost Head' suddenly sounds like Fu Manchu, whilst 'Hexe' contains a wonderful melodious middle section with additional acoustic guitars. Another highlight is 'Riddle of Steel Pt. I' that begins in best Sleep tradition, especially the vocals evoke memories of Al Cisneros chants. The biggest surprise waits again in the middle section, where Sleep and Hawkwind will be merged together for a convincing result. After that the songs is reentering the realms of southern-flavoured boogie rock, without losing its sharp Sleep edge. The opener 'White Walls' is a tasteful mixture consisting of early Black Sabbath, Fu Manchu and Sleep, where ELDER sets its own accents with the help of some atmospheric and suggestive keyboard sounds. Although the band is far away from being groundbreaking, it's fun to listen to their album because this three young guys have the peculiar gift of writing songs with memorable moments. The guitarwork of Nick Disalvo is another reason why I always like to listen to this record again. There seems to lurk a hidden talent and his soloing is a veritable joy to my ears. I am still quite curious to see what comes next, but ELDER's debut represents the great potential of a promising and hopeful band.