SKY FAB REVIEWS
Now here really is a blast from the past!! Starting out a punk and hardcore outfit in 1982, that's the year I was born incidentally, Italian band 'Warhead' have moved onto a more stoner metal wavelength and this 2007 release of full length album 'Sky Fab' [Crap name I know but give it a chance] is the bands first release in nine years since 1998's 'Sand'sSon'.
So as the old adage goes you should always respect your elders and in music I suppose this really is true. My thinking behind this is that if a band has lasted this long then generally they are worth listening too and must have some degree of talent.
In the case of 'Warhead' this is spot on with their almost constantly fast flowing melodies, catchy tunes and pleasant and very fun sounding vocals. in fact there is very little to criticise here and 'Sky Fab' is just a good way to spend your weekend rocking out to a groove laden band who know from many years of experience how good old fashioned rock should be delivered! [7.5]
You’d be forgiven if the first thought that popped into your head before opening this thread was “Who the hell is Warhead, anyway?” That was pretty much my reaction when my editor assigned me this album to review. Well, after doing a little digging on the good ol’ interwebs, a few facts about Warhead quickly emerged. 1. They’re from Italy. 2. They’ve been around since 1982. 3. Their website looks like the product of some of the world’s best and brightest web designers… circa 1997.
But hey, as long as the music kicks ass, who cares what their website looks like, right? Unfortunately, there’s not a lot going on in that regard, either. For a band with more than a quarter-century under their belts and ten releases in their official discography, Warhead sounds like a band still searching for an identity. The majority of the songs on Sky Fab are a mixture of watered-down stoner rock and Red Hot Chili Peppers-inspired funk rock. Lead singer Narayana Minozzi delivers most of the lyrics in a nasal monotone that gets more grating as the album progresses.
There are a few moments that stand out among the mediocrity. “Nuclear Gestapo” opens with a killer riff that could have been the foundation for a great song, but they sadly never return to it. “The Best Meditation” also starts out strong and actually sustains that momentum for a good three minutes, which would be commendable if the song wasn’t six minutes long. But the few high points are undermined by the far more frequent missteps, culminating in the album’s final track, “Desert Plains,” which sounds like an ill-advised collaboration between Ozzy Osbourne, Billy Corgan, and the Chemical Brothers.
Warhead’s biography says they started as a crossover thrash/punk band. Considering the recent resurgence of that genre, they might be better off returning to their roots.
After nine years Warhead are back with a new album Sky Fab on Beard Of Stars records. Fabio Scipioni (guitars), Walter Sacripanti (drums), Walter Vincenti (bass) e Narayana Minozzi (vocals) have picked up where they left off, with forty minutes of pure fiery hard rock, ably mixed with doom, stoner and classic metal. (Even if the electro trance cover of Judas Priest “Desert Plains” is rather bizarre).
Time hasn’t taken any toll on the band. The opener “Holyman in the Sun” with Black Sabbath riffs and breathtaking rhythm causes goose bumps, as does the groove of “Atomic Zombie” and “Santa Pupa”, and the fascinating acid melodies of “Messenger of Eternity”.
The variations in style show Warhead’s ability in both writing and playing. “Rocket Guru” flows like a doom version of Faith No More. In “The Best Meditation” the band hold their heads high through the challenge of psychedelic music. “Power of the Sun” with weighty guitar and robust rhythm section shines with glitter and light of an almost glam style.
Sky Fab is an honest and above all well played album.
Purtroppo sono in pochi a ricordare “Sand’son”, disco che aveva rilanciato i Warhead dopo il periodo punk hc degli anni ‘80. Uscito nel 1998 sotto l’egida di Paul Chain (che l’aveva prodotto e ci aveva suonato), proponeva una band agguerrita e tosta, alle prese con un heavy rock psichedelico vicino allo stile di Spirit Caravan, Cathedral, Trouble e Monster Magnet. A nove anni di distanza da quel lavoro, il quartetto umbro torna in pista grazie alla Beard of Stars con il nuovo “Sky Fab”. Fabio Scipioni (chitarra), Walter Sacripanti (batteria), Walter Vincenti (basso) e Narayana Minozzi (voce) riprendono lì dove avevano lasciato: quaranta minuti di puro e focoso heavy psycho rock, mischiato abilmente al doom, allo stoner e al metal classico (anche se la cover electro trance di “Desert Plains” piazzata alla fine - Judas Preist anno di grazia 1981 - è piuttosto bizzarra).
Il tempo pare non esser mai trascorso per i quattro. “Holyman in the Sun” è una opener da brivido, riff ‘sabbathiano’ e tempi mozzafiato. Così come il groove di “Atomic Zombie” e “Santa Pupa” o le melodie acide e affascinanti di “Messenger of Eternity”. Ci sono anche le dovute variazioni di stile che fanno dei Warhead una band abile in scrittura ed esecuzione: “Rocket Guru” scorre come una versione doomy dei Faith No More (!), “The Best Meditation” affronta a testa alta le acide asperità psichedeliche, “Power of the Sun” tra chitarre come macigni e ritmiche corpose brilla di glitter e luci quasi glam.
Insomma, “Sky Fab” è un album onesto e soprattutto ben suonato. Certo, non travolge per innovazione ma ci rende contenti per aver ritrovato una band che credevamo dispersa.
New chapter for Beard Of Stars and new adventure for the Italian group Warhead. The band have a trash-punk past, which then evolved into psychedelic hard rock with the album Sand’son in 1998.
Written and produced by guitarist Fabio Scipioni “Sky Fab” continues with the nuclear theme which has distinguished the band since the 80’s.
Warhead’s music contrasts acid arpeggios and classic hard rock riffs. The rhythm section of Walter Sacripanti on drums and Valter Vincenti on bass pumps like there’s no tomorrow, and Narayana Minozzi’s vocals take everything towards the oriental in the psychedelic parts.
The opening tracks “Holyman in the Sun” and “Atomic Zombie” are stupendous.” are stupendous.
Nuovo capitolo per la Beard Of Stars e nuova avventura per gli italiani Warhead, combo umbro dal passato trash-punk evolutosi poi in hard-rock psichedelico nell’album “Sand’s Son” del 1998.
Scritto e prodotto dal chitarrista storico dei Warhead, Fabio Scipioni, “Sky Fab” porta avanti le tematiche nucleari che anno contraddistinto la discografia e l’impegno della band fin dagli anni ’80.
La musica dei Warhead contrappone acidi arpeggi a classici riff hard-rock, la sezione ritmica, formata da Walter Sacripanti (drum) e Valter Vincenti (bass), pompacome non mai e la voce di Narayana Minozzi trascina tutto verso oriente nelle parti psichedeliche.
Stupende “Holyman in the Sun” e “Atomic Zombie” che aprono il disco.
Stefano Miraglia – Magicbus # 8 2007
The Italian Warhead play 80’s metal with strong doom overtones. The rhythms are strongly marked but the guitar isn’t too heavy. The band demonstrates a certain elegance in the voice which produces a rich wrap around sound with glam undertones on “Power of the Sun”.
The production gives a warm 70’s sound, with the songs, structures of the pieces and the overall atmosphere taking priority over single riffs, giving the music a vague spiritual sense in the style of Trouble. The bands hard rock style is enriched with spacey smoky soporific psychedelic effects (Santa Pupa, The Best Meditation).
It’s an honest and genuine work which perhaps lacks a little in production but demonstrates good musical taste and sensibility. The techno dance cover version of Judas Priest “Desert Plains” is however incomprehensible..
Gli italiani Warhead suonano un metal anni 80 con forti ascendenze doom. I tempi sono sempre piuttosto cadenzati, ma le chitarre non sono poi pesantissime. Piuttosto la band dimostra una certa eleganza nella voce che cerca di produrre impasti avvolgenti e ricchi di fascino, grazie anche ad un lieve retrogusto glam. (Power Of The Sun)
La produzione privilegia il suono caldo ed avvolgente degli anni 70 in cui è la canzone stessa, la struttura del pezzo e l'atmosfera ad essere privileggiata, piuttosto che il singolo riff. In questo senso trapela anche un vago senso spirituale riconducibile alla lezione dei Trouble. La scuola hard rock talvolta si arricchisce di effetti spaziali e fumosi che provocano un leggero sopore psichedelico (Santa Pupa, The Best Meditation).
E' un lavoro genuino ed onesto che magari manca un po' di spessore nella produzione, ma che dimostra buona sensibilità e gusto musicale. Incomprensibile invece la cover in versione techno dance di Desert Plains dei Judas Priest.
Stefano Cerati – Rumore #186/187 luglio/agosto 2007
Della serie “a volte ritornano”, dei Warhead, combo di Terni attivo dal lontano 1982, si erano perse le tracce dal 1998, ovvero dal CD “Sand’Son”, che a sua volta interrompeva un silenzio quasi decennale. Ma evidentemente la passione non si spegne con l’età e così, pur nella precarietà di un’attività, affrontata al meglio della competenza, ma naturalmente non professionale, i Warhead tornano con un lavoro interessante e produttivo, che sposta ancora una volta l’asse del suono verso lidi inediti.
E non aver mai dato riferimenti costanti nel corso della sua lunga carriera, è una caratteristica peculiare della band, guidata oggi dal solo superstite originale, il chitarrista Fabio Scipioni (autore anche di tutti i pezzi): infatti nel tempo metal, punk e hard rock si sono accavallati nel circo delle influenze. Oggi il suono pare essere un magnifico grunge schizoide, tra Mudhoney e Smashing Pumpkins, anche grazie a Narayana Minozzi, giovane vocalist che porta nuova linfa vitale, con quell’incedere barcollante, che ricorda vagamente Iggy Pop.
Otto brani originali, tra i quali segnalo il riff plateale di “Atomic Zombi”, la marcia roboante di “Nuclear Gestapo” sorretta da una folla delirante, gli origami orientali di “The Best Meditation” e lo stoner hard di “Power Of The Sun”. In chiusura una versione trance di “Desert Plains” dei Judas
Priest, stravolta e convincente, che amplia gli orizzonti dei Warhead, ai quail auguriamo di non dover attendere altri dieci anni per farci ascoltare l’energia del loro rock (www.warhead.it).
“The Warhead are back. The nearly twenty years italian band from Umbria has developed the hard-psychedelic matrix of their music from their former thrash-hardcore-punk style, and the evolution is clear and positive! Behind the Warhead project there are two great guitar players (Fabio Scipioni and Fausto Colasanti) with the support of the really good singer Kevin Throath (ex-Revenge) and Valter Vincenti and Walter Sacripanti as rhytmic section. The excellent “Sand’son”, produced by doom metal legend Paul Chain that is also author of frightening solos in three songs, is moving near the Wino’s Spirit Caravan style and this two band aren’t quite remote, qualitatively speaking. The CD developes itself in an engaging and really original manner….”Foolkiller”, the classic doom of “Fire from Within”, the more quiet “I Lose Control” and “S. and S.O.N.” surely are the best tracks.
A combo really mature….if they will not reach the success they deserve, the reason will be find in the fact that they don’t come from the States”.
“….Shooting Stars is one of those tracks that is fairly straight ahead rock and is a good opener for the CD while the Downwinders takes on a more off beat feel but it still flows nicely and has a good long intro. Foolkiller is classic rock and is probably a little of place in this mix of songs but they come roaring back with track four Fire From Within which is a slower groove kind of affair. I Lose Control is next and this is a very cool mellow-ish kind of a track reminding me a little of the Melvins before it shifts up a gear and Keep Inside kicks in with a powerful thump. Black Out In Cell Block 10 follows and is probably the most metal orientated track on here before they close this nine track effort with S.And S.O.N. which is an interesting track that has total change in the middle of it. This nine track release is fairly diverse with the stand out tracks for me being I Loose Control and the closing track, this is a fine effort and worth of some attention”.
Jeb - High Beam
“….under the desert sun and eschewing rattlesnakes, the Warhead have brought out a record worth of great attention, a record that can boast the doom-guru Paul Chain as productor and special guest…..”
“….and here at GL Productions the album has spinned quite a few times on my CD player. The album covers a lot of ground very much emotions to it. Great vocals and Paul Chains production is a great help and it brings a lot of great things out of the band. A highly recommended album…….”
“….Mmmhhhhhh……musically it’s very good. A good singer, good production and great musicians….but unfortunately not my favorite style….sorry guys! It’s a mix between Solitude Aeturnus, Power Metal, Doom Metal (and I know, that they mustn’t hide behind the big bands in that scene!). From an other reviewer they would get a better review forsure. Really worth mentioning is the guitar player (cool solo-stuff) and the vocalist. Both did an excellent job! Good band and if you like that style…..get in touch!”
“….The point is that the band plays good music. It is hard enough and it can take you away and away with a magical way. The electric travel has just began and it has 9 stations so many as the traks of this great CD. The guitar riffs will remind you good old Black Sabbath days. The vocal are clean and melodic and the production done by the studio wizard Paul Chain, helps the songs to “breathe”. Well do not miss this release it is worth listening”.
“….nobody creates music as deep and soulful as italians, regardless of the genre. This record is a great ride through hard rock, doom, psychedelia and a full range of emotions. Thoroughly original and highly enjoyable”.
Lou Rinaldi – Stonerrock@onelist.com
“….The nine songs are very melodic and there are some interesting changes inside the whole album. Some songs have strong Power-Metal elements while others are move in the 70’s Heavy-Rock vein. There are slow hypnotic moments and I think that all people who are in Black Sabbath, Solitude Aeturnus, Trouble, Count Raven, etc. will like this Disc…….”
“….Sand’son is a work that can be included for sure in the boom of the stoner-rock scene; it’s a psych-hard-doom mixture not wearing itself out in the imitation of the most plagiarized authorities in the field. Kevin Throath shows his high-sounding and hieratic voice and songs as “Shooting Stars” and “In Mission for God” give a good example of the quintet’s kind of style. The Paul Chain’s solos in “The Downwinders” and “Keep Inside” are so charatheristic that have no need to be remarked in the back cover to be recognized. The greatest ambitions are in the title track that increases the band’s individuality, devoted to grow ulteriorly in times to come”.
“….between the mists of the past and the enigmas of the future, the Warhead’s new release seems ageless….it looks apparently like the old Sant Vitus school, but there’s a timeless menacing sensation that makes the listener paralyzed and dumbfounded……”
“ …. a gloomyand powreful riff opens the initial “Shootin’ stars”, granitic and aggressive, followed by a handfulof abrasive and very heavy tracks like “The Downwinders”, “Foolkiller”, “Fire from Within” and expecially this last, osessing endless, stunning, sensous and dreading, “rooks” the listener with his tribute to the Sabbath…..”
“….they have developed the project of a large nuclear warhead wedged in the numb conscience of the Country that, if will be of no use to take the adjusted “shitstem” off the hinges, at least will melt the thiny lights of some damned Christmas tree. It’s the philosophy of the old Led Zep put into the service of the “all for one” punk……..”
“….cadenced rhythmics and gloomy riffs pull the leg of each excerpt, with vocal interpretation of great value and an exact and powerful rhytmic acconpanies every passage, without the least flaw…….”
“….nine red-hot tracks full of psychedelic Hard Rock, a little old style, so effective that could be easly placed between the thypical 70’s Hard Rock and the dusty and bluesy Stoner Rock of Kyuss, without making a sorry figure……..”
“….the group has oriented itself towards a brilliant hard rock with epic tones and esoteric tendencies. In total, nine episodes with a very carefully developed technique that reveal anyway a remarkable impact immediacy, even if not pursuing captivating solutions. It is a research of refined armonies whose expressiveness aims at being both cerebral and physical……..”
“….Sand’son is composed by 9 songs that vaguely remember of Alice in Chains, in the arrangements and vocal melodies in particular. Even if dark, “Shooting Stars” goes on groovy rhytms, while on the next track, “The Downwinders” the step becomes doomy but open to melody however. Very good the last two tracks “Black-out in Cell Block 10” and “S. and S.O.N.”, full of Sabbathian magma that let it be understood the probably future evolution, but in “Keep Inside”, my favourite one, Paul Chain played an awesome solo that just for it the CD is worthy of buying".
Marco Cavallini – Gardenia nr. 2
“….the artistic production of the doom-guru Paul Chain, special guest in four tracks, gives to “sand’son” a really hard and powerfull sound that makes the CD very cool for the Stoner Rock and Hard-Psych fans……..”