Graveyard - 'Innocence & Decadence'

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Graveyard - 'Innocence & Decadence'

This is an album that is best served as a whole to appreciate the creativity that has gone into it.

I was first introduced to Graveyard back in Fireworks #55 when they released their third album 'Lights Out', and was initially fooled into thinking they were some sort of Doom-orientated band due to their name and "none more black" album cover. However, I was more than pleasantly surprised with what I eventually heard.

You see, the Gothenburg quartet are a million miles away from the Melodic Rock currently peddled by the vast majority of their Swedish counterparts such as H.e.a.t, Eclipse and Treat etc. (some of my favourite bands might I add). With a retro sound that is distinctly late sixties and early seventies in style, and drawing in influences from a vast number of artists, Graveyard somehow manages to mesh it all together to create a quirky identity all of their own. The warm and fuzzy production techniques they enlist adding to the authenticity of their nostalgic style, though each instrument is perfectly audible.

Throughout 'Innocence & Decadence' you will hear references to the likes of Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, The Doors, Peter Green-era Fleetwood Mac, Steppenwolf, Hawkwind and Free – fast and furiously frantic Classic Rock/Metal-edged workouts drift into Space Rock Psychedelicness, head back towards Doom-laden riffs before turning towards meandering, brooding Blues workouts, then drift away into serenely haunting, almost ethereal passages – even a subtle Gospel influence creeps in along the way. It would be of no benefit for me to pinpoint specific tracks, as there is so much going on here, but suffice to say this is an album that is best served as a whole to appreciate the creativity that has gone into it.

In complete contrast to their previous album cover, the artwork of 'Innocence & Decadence' is stunning, surely adding to the appeal of the resurgence in the popularity of vinyl and a throwback to those pre-download days, while the mostly short-and-to-the-point songs and approximately forty minute running time complete that old-school feel.

Ant Heeks

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