Wednesday 4 April 2018

VUG - S/T (Album Review)

Release date: April 13th 2018. Label: Noisolution. Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

VUG – S/T – Tracklisting

White Room


Phil Octowhale, Bass
Max Pank, Guitar
Bommi Pelletier, Guitar+Vocals
Nick DiSalvo, Drums


VUG offers an uncompromising raw sound on their self-titled debut album. Taking refuge from the modern hard rock world and adapting a more classic seventies Psych/Hard Rock sound merged with a thumping Proto-Metal delivery. VUG album has a raw punk/progressive feel with the band playing very loose and free with their music.

Opening track - Lose - is a heavy affair with the vocals from Bommi having a decidedly vintage feel to them. The music takes influence from Deep Purple, Black Sabbath and Thin Lizzy at times. The whole sound of the album is one perhaps more suited for the classic/retro rock fan than the modern day listener. As VUG embrace the legendary sounds of the seventies. When the guitar solos appear on Lose, they never feel forced or out of place. The song can be quite mellow in parts and you know for a fact VUG will soon return to playing a heavier style of music that you can't but help lose yourself in. The song-writing arrangement is impressive on this song and throughout this album as VUG merges the different musical elements that make their overall sound.

Second track - Garden - carries on the psych classic hard rock vibe but one that adds heavier strands of classic heavy metal. This is where the proto-metal influences kick in and allows VUG to play a more confident style of music. The vocals from Bommi are impressive but I would have liked to hear more variety from him. Though he puts in a top-class vocal performance on the entire album.

Third track - Prophecy - opens with a soulful blues rock sound and never strays far from that style of music. There a few nice touches of psychedelic rock appearing along the way. This is Perhaps VUG's "mobile phone/lighter in the air" song compared to the other songs on the album. I did admire how VUG brought in a classic "Thin Lizzy" approach during the middle of the song. As there is some impressive dual/twin guitar riffs being played on this song.

The rest of the songs on the album all last around the four minute mark and this sees VUG leave the progressive rock sound behind and play a more direct Proto-Metal/Hard Rock sound with elements of Vintage Doom Rock being played as well. Standout tracks on the second half of the album are: Awaken, White Room and VUG. Another highlight of the album is the production. It may sound very raw sounding to some listeners. However I feel the production is handled superbly well. As it captures VUG's vintage, raw and unapologetic sound the way it's meant to be heard.

I forgot to mention that VUG has Nick from Elder in their ranks playing drums. Just another reason if you want to check VUG out and see how Nick's how superbly well Nick plays the drums.

VUG has released a brilliantly entertaining slice of Hard Rock/Heavy Metal that you will find very hard to beat. As no doubt the Classic/Hard Rock community will go crazy over this album.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Nick from VUG for the promo. VUG debut album will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via Noisolution from April 13th 2018.