Solar Haze is a stoner metal band, a title which they embrace not only in musical style but also in name. Naturally, their music is coated with fuzzy textures and stacked neck deep with riffs. Their self-titled debut carries all of these elements proudly and delivers them over the course of nine delightful songs. Solar Haze is a solid effort that sticks true to the genre and should appeal to longtime fans of some of the greats.
First, a Little Story
Solar Haze crept into my life slowly, through the magic of Instagram…and I’m glad they did so. I remember the moment I heard a few chords from “Hawk in the Wind”, the first single and song that convinced me to pick up a copy of the album. I knew that I had found something special. A week or so before the album dropped the band’s label, Metal Assault Records, kindly sent me a promotional copy, which I’ve played just about every time I got in my car since I downloaded it to my phone.
If it hasn’t become clear yet, I really enjoyed the album. I feel compelled to state that I wasn’t paid to say nice things about the album. I was given an advanced copy, however “[m]ore than 120 rock/metal blogs and media outlets” were also given copies, according to Metal Assault’s Instagram.
On their debut album, Solar Haze has crafted an enjoyable adventure. The guitars are dyed with dirty filters, the vocals are raspy and vaulted and the drum track is lively and on point. Their music is saturated with gritty notes, while remaining clean and accessible to people who may not ordinarily like metal. Lyrically, the band touches on different issues, and even gets political on a couple of songs.
Solar Haze embraces a lot of foundational elements of heavy metal, and thus like so many before them, draw on some of the greatest metal bands, such as Black Sabbath, Metallica and Iron Maiden. Personally, I hear a lot of Black Sabbath in their music. No matter what bands you want to compare them to, Solar Haze is a solid metal band that can construct alluring songs that are steeped in a definite groove.
Songs Worth Investigating
The title track is my favorite, however, the monolithic “Nefarious Natures” is great too. It’s a slow burn that is built around a single riff and groove at first, but eventually explodes into crazy guitar work. “Coven” seemed to be popular before the record dropped. It was published as the album’s second single in the weeks leading up to the album’s release date.
…And to Conclude
If this record is any kind of indication of the band’s future, Solar Haze is going to have a very good, very exciting career. The album is well constructed and offers eight well done tracks that help the band explore their sound a little. Even though the band is firmly a stoner metal band, they don’t stick to the same formula. Each song is different. Solar Haze is accessible for those looking to try out some new music or those looking for a brilliant example of stoner metal.