"Altered States" (Self-produced; 2024)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

Gnarwhal, out of Yellowknife, Canada, has released "Altered States," a four-track collection of fuzzy, often gloomy tunes that take envelop you in their world for the entire runing time of the EP, which clocks in at just over seventeen minutes.

Interestingly, the first track, "Tides," sounds exactly as you might expect it to. It ebbs and flows and, for whatever the hell reason, made me think of the ocean. Up next is "The War, Nothing More," the longest track on the EP, running almost seven minutes. It's a more epic track, sounding slower, bigger and more expansive than "Tides." "From Her Hands" is track three and its fuzzy, chunky guitar keeps it driving throughout. The final track, the title track, chugs along at a steady pace until it climaxes with an atmospheric lead that closes the EP on the right note.

Fans of fuzz rock and the doom sound will find something a little bit different with Gnarwhal but not so different that it will turn them away.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2024 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.