Saturday 17 August 2019

Yarnspinner - A Massive Head Of Steam (Album Review)

Release date: August 16th 019. Label: Self Released. Format: DD – Physical Releases coming later.

For The Masses – Tracklisting

1.The Stag of Lee's Valley 02:40
2.Hair of the Tooth 04:48
3.Drunk Cosmonaut 03:33
4.Night Witch 09:52
5.Respect the Whakamanas 01:41
6.The Great Indulgence 07:36
7.A Massive Head of Steam 14:01


Thomas Brand - Vocals
Nick Smith - Guitars, Vocals
Josh Day - Guitars, Vocals
Brigitt White - Bass
Tim Stewart - Drums


A Massive Head Of Steam is the debut album from New Zealand Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metallers – Yarnspinner – and it’s gloriously heavy and rough as hell album that doesn’t shy away from it’s DIY rock/metal roots for a thrilling and direct modern sound.

The album opens with The Stag Of Lee’s Valley and it’s a mix of Sludge, Doom, Stoner Metal and a healthy dose of Punk Rock holding everything together. The snarling vocals of Thomas feels he’s been picked out of a Punk Rock band as he carries a rough and ready demeanour to his style of vocals and it works like a charm. The heavy riffs take time to become settled and more confident. Once they do Yarnspinner create one hell of a racket that sees the band play some epic sounding Doom/Sludge/Stoner based sounds.

Second song – Hair Of The Tooth – is a more gloomy affair with the band playing a more Doom based sound with elements of Sludge/Stoner Metal creeping in here and there. The overall sound of the album is quite lo-fi but is handled surprisingly well. The lyrics aren’t the strongest and quite basic in parts but it’s the overall package that Yarnspinner offer on this song that makes it an uncompromising listen.

Third song – Drunk Cosmonaut – feels influenced by WEEDEATER and New Zealand Heavyweights – BEASTWARS. So if you like your music with a WEEDIAN influence but with a more cosmic sound then this song will impress you the most. The riffs are HEAVY AS FUCK and Yarnspinner make no apologies for this and offer one of the most exciting songs on the album.

Fourth song – Night Witch – sees the band change direction for the album as they venture into the realm of Of Progressive Rock/Metal with this almost 10 minute epic. This is the first of 3 songs on the album where Yarnspinner offer the listener a more progressive listen with the band impressing with their own style of Doom, Sludge and Stoner Metal but with a more theatrical edge. The lyrics and vocals are both on point here and show you that the band are a more exciting prospect writing and playing these epic songs.

Fifth song – Respect the Whakamanas – sees the band return to their fast-paced Punk driven Doom/Sludge/Stoner Metal sound with the band playing a more primal style of music. It’s all over and done with in under two minutes and it’s breathlessly entertaining.

The final two songs – The Great Indulgence and A Massive Head Of Steam – sees the band offer 22 minutes of music with the final song lasting over 14 minutes by itself. The band flex their creative talents on both of these songs and perhaps offer the most exciting parts of the album. However, it can be frustrating in places. As the band play many different styles of music on this part of the album and it can be hard to keep up at times. 

Overall, A Massive Head Of Steam does exactly what it needs to do and that’s to entertain and to pummel the listener into submission with heavy sounding riffs from the start.

If you’re a fan of Weedeater, Bongzilla, CONAN and BEASTWARS then this is the perfect place to be.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe