TORSO (Inside) CD
Formed in Vienna in 2009, 'Inside' is the self-financed 2012 debut release of TORSO. Due to the band name and cover artwork, I did expect some kind of heavily 1970's influenced hard prog, but they proved me wrong. Instead, TORSO is located in the here and now, but of course there are also some unavoidable references to the decade where plateau shoes were the hottest shit in town. These influences have been skillfully interwoven with plenty of new fuzz. To put it plainly, fans of Dozer and Samsara Blues Experiment will also get their money's worth. It is obvious that TORSO have started as a jam band, because a couple of cuts still contain flexible structures that invite to a jam session during a live performance.
But in general 'Inside' is very structured and to the point. TORSO do not forget to rock as in 'Mona Lisa' or in the opener 'Room'. Great importance is not only attached to the wall of fuzz, but also to sticky grooves and tight hooklines. 'Inside' is not short of emotion, which also has to do with guitarist Bernhard Gager's clear vocals. One of the most beautiful tracks is 'Inside' that is based on an irresistible vocal line, coupled with some gripping dynamics. The different parts connect seamlessly to form an organic unit, but that actually goes for each of the included 7 tracks.
There are, of course, some things that are a little embryonic as, for example, a few riffs as well as some of the heavy grooves. But one should consider that TORSO is a young band, and due to this, 'Inside' is a notable achievement for these four guys. In addition, they cleverly avoid to sound static, and there is no shortage of creativity. Pieces of doom, psychedelic and prog can be found in the mix too, so that 'Inside' remains diverse and exciting. With each play this one builds new synapses and maintains an edge and a bluesy freshness that some of the others don't have. So, if I didn't have this CD already, I would buy it.