Wednesday 10 April 2024

IVY GARDENS - GOON (Album Review)

Release Date: April 19th 2024. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: Cassette/Digital Download

GOON - Tracklisting

1. 12 Million Bar Blues (4:43)

2. Boner (5:27)

3. Chlorine (1:52)

4. Black Sand & Gold (0:57)

5. Lamb (2:01)

6. Stoic (3:14)

7. Goon (3:22)

8. Shattered Glass (1:45)

9. Provider (5:37)



Sebastian Hogg (Keyboards)

 Andrew Blackborow (Guitar & Vocals)

Joe Zandwyk (Drums & Vocals)


GOON is the debut album from Punk/Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal bruisers IVY GARDENS who are from Niagara, Ontario, Canada who play a mostly intense blend of music with a rough and ready musical approach which matches the name of the album title. Taking musical cues from bands such as Red Fang, Melvins, Truckfighters, KYUSS and QOTSA but providing their own muscular style which is throwninto the mix with a surprising amount of Psychedelic grooves along the way. 

GOON does have moments of Post-Stoner sounds and deft Progressive touches which showcases a different side to IVY GARDENS especially within the excellent two opening tracks of 12 Million Bar Blues and Boner. The music is always catchy, aggressive and with a real honest SEEDY approach within their lyrics but one that amounts to a damn good time. The vocals from both Andrew and Joe are from the old SCHOOL delivery reminiscent of Josh Homme in his musical prime. The Blues Rock swagger is quite intense with IVY GARDENS delving into a kaleidoscopic journey that blends 1960’s Psych Hard Rock and 1970’s Doom into the mix on various parts of the album.

The BRUISER part of their creative output is heard mostly within their Sludge Rock/Metal appetite that appears mostly within the background but gives IVY GARDEN’s overall style of music. The album takes a more direct Punk Rock or Street Doom level approach with their music from the third song onwards with the tracks being mostly on for shorter periods of times but IVY GARDENS are more abrasive and have a wilder free-flowing rebellious attitude to them especially on tracks such as Chlorine, Black Sand & Gold, Lamb and Shattered Glass. 

There’s even moments of Psychedelic Droned out attitude appearing within Black Sand & Gold which showcases a different side to the band before that weird sounding Psychedelic movement appears to put a more GONZO and NOISE ROCK spin to the whole record.

IVY GARDENS return to the albums earlier classic Sludge/Stoner Rock roots on the standout tracks of Stoic, Goon and Provider with a few moments of heavy rock experimentation which allows the band to become quite hedonistic in places with great creative themes leaving you mightily impressed from start to finish. 

The album is quite short with GOON running under thirty minutes in length but IVY GARDENS include multiple amounts of intense and superbly entertaining Stoner Rock grooves throughout. The band also prove what great musicians they actually are with the amount of different themes of Sludge/Stoner Metal that appears within the album.

GOON is an action packed and turbocharged release powered by Pissed Off grooves and a snarling Punk Rock Attitude which allows IVY GARDENS to deliver a devastating FREAKY slice of Psychedelic Sludge/Stoner Metal.

Excellent and Highly Recommended.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Asher Media PR for the promo.

GOON will be available to buy on Cassette/Download via BandCamp from April 19th 2024.


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