Skraeckoedlan - Appeltradet - (8.5/10)
Published on June 15, 2012
Plucked from Sweden where everything is just a little sweeter, stoner rock quartet Skraeckoedlan burst onto the scene with a dizzyingly fresh debut LP last year called Appeltradet, a record stocked with groove, soul, and infectiously foot-stomping tracks all the way through. Now, whether you can accurately pronounce the band’s name or the name of their record is inconsequential; Skraeckoedlan’s Appeltradet easily transcends pronunciation.
While Mastodon’s The Hunter and Graveyard’s Hisingen Blues were two of the more celebrated stoner rock albums of last year, Appeltradet, among many others, caught the under-the-radar airstream. So much like the two aforementioned bands, Skraeckoedlan offer up ingredients found in both: from sludge and psychedelia to doom and 70’s style hard rock, and an innate knack for dishing out moments of stirring, hair-raising melody. Most impressive, however, is just how tight the band sounds. Just as Tank86 blew the metal world away with last year’s instrumental powerhouse Rise, the precision of Skraeckoedlan make them sound gigantic; case in point the awesomely heavy “Chronos.”
The band mixes both English and Swedish lyrics in the album to nice effect, singing about cool shit like great beasts and celestial voyages, and as excellent as their proggy brand of stoner rock goes, Robert Lamu’s lead vocals are wonderfully clear and strong and give the album legitimate distinction from other stoner/sludge acts. While the album is fraught with memorable numbers, perhaps no duo is as effective as the marriage of “Universe” and “Cactus,” each wrapping pleasant and thoughtful vocal patterns around super-rollicking, yet impressively controlled, grooves.
The word is out on Skraeckoedlan (which ‘loosely’ means ‘dinosaur) and their tremendous debut album Appeltradet (which ‘loosely’ means ‘apple tree’). The songs are lively, heavy, and they just don’t get old; hence why this review is being published more than a year after its release.