“Imagine the classic Pink Floyd sound mixed with Rammstein and a touch of Meshuggah!” says the cover banner, which may be simplifying the bubbling stew within but gives a reasonable summation of the approach applied to young Copenhagen quartet VOLA’s debut album.
The Same War, Stray The Skies and A Stare Without Eyes generally start with a stretch of calm ambient electronics before the Big Riff juggernaut steams in like Godzilla’s radioactive bollocks interrupting a summer picnic and singer-guitarist Asger Mygind ejaculates soaring Gilmour-style guitar pyrotechnics and suitably sensitive vocals. He says the band – completed by keyboardist Martin Werner, bassist Nicolai Mogensen and drummer Felix Ewert – was forged from a love of Dream Theater, Opeth and P-Tree, along with late Massive Attack and Steven Wilson.
While those influences can be spotted on widescreen creations such as Your Mind Is A Helpless Dreamer and epic title track, the injection of odd time signatures can also conjure memories of John McLaughlin’s early 70s extrapolations. Mygind says he wants to levitate his audience via his band’s big choruses. On this evidence, it’s quite likely this may happen if aired at the world’s larger gatherings.