Yogi Bear, much to everyone's surprise, is clearly a Metal fan. When he wasn't being chased by Ranger Smith or stealing people's food he was obviously listening to a lot of SABBATH and other various Doom bands. As with most Metalheads, eventually he decided to form a band- I don't know what kind of musician you'd have to be to want to have him fronting your band, but obviously a bear would have a pretty huge stage presence, and I guess there would be some sort of gimmick factor.
OK, ok, that was lame (and it may be completely wrong, considering I haven't seen that show for a good 13 years), but still, this sounds a lot like that. Hard rocking riffs that bring to mind BLACK SABBATH, DOOMRIDERS and maybe THIN LIZZY, even, combined with vocals that bring to mind, well, Yogi Bear. It definitely isn't bad- the riffs are well executed and the grooves huge- but it could be a lot catchier. They nail it a few times- "Crusade" is catchy as all hell with a soaring chorus that's makes you want to bang your head, whereas "Buried 1000 Times" has a huge, HUGE opening riff that's really, really heavy, like a more upbeat BLACK SABBATH. It crushes, basically. "November" has the weirdest vocals of them all, but it's still quite effective, being a more down tempo number that most Doom fans will enjoy. It's all backed up by a suitable production which manages to be both polished and raw, which is good times.
Not all of it is good, though. For an album that's only eight tracks long, there's an inexcusable amount of filler. "Signs" is a fairly boring slow song, and the final song is also a bit of stinker. Similiar in aesthetics and tempo to "Crusade", maybe, but with some totally hopeless riffs. It goes nowhere and is a fairly boring, really. Totally unmemorable. It seems that this would've been much better as an EP.
Well, overall this release is good but not great- but the vocals are a sticking point. I guess he just has a heavy Hungarian accent- but in that case, damn, the Hungarian accent is weird. Stoner Metal that's enjoyable if a bit mediocre, combined with odd (and honestly, quite bad) vocals. For completists only.
(Online March 6, 2008)