FROM the depths of Louisiana - sorry we meant Sheffield - comes a beast of an album that straddles every preconception you might have about what constitutes a stoner sound, a blues vibe, all with added dashes of doom.
Regulus took us a bit by surprise when they played at HRH Stoner Vs Doom last year, for once the hometown hype proved to have heft rather than hyperbole.
And, as such the release of their album 'Quadralith' on Off Yer Rocka Recordings was eagerly awaited to see if that live menace could be captured in the studio. Thankfully it has.
From the rollicking pace of 'Last Chance to Die Young' through to the dirty NOLA groove of 'Heart of Stone' and the bluesy soloing on title track 'Quadralith' Regulus touch all the bases.
But, this isn't some magpie like plundering of styles. This is a band that wears its influenced on its sleeves and if you don't like it you either have cloth ears or you can fuck right off...
The way each track is allowed to evolve and develop its own distinct vibe is impressive. The aforementioned title track allows the blues solo to migrate to wah-wah speed driven mania and maintain speed without ever losing its core sensibility.
There is a coherence within Regulus' soundscape that means it has something of the swamp and the bright city lights. This is a band that doesn't bow down to the clichés.
Luke Jennings and Thomas 'Oz' Osbourne intertwine guitar lines and structure their playing that is complimentary rather than wandering off in different directions. The sense the listener is left with is one of harmony and hardness, never mind the fretboard heroics that others focus upon.
That said, to bring it all together on one collection of songs would have tried many other bands patience, but Regulus have managed to make their diverse sound, keep it within the right parameters and roar loudly.
Yep, this is Sheffield Steel that cuts the unwary to the bone - in the best way of course.
Review by Jonathan Traynor
Quadralith is out now on Off Yer Rocka Recordings