Operator Generator

Polar Fleet

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Polar Fleet Review

by Alex Henderson

One common denominator among so many stoner rock bands that emerged in the '90s and early '00s is a strong appreciation of Black Sabbath. Operator Generator is no exception; Sabbath's influence often asserts itself on the band's debut album, Polar Fleet. Whenever guitarist Thomas Choi provides his forceful, driving riffs, it is obvious that he is a major admirer of Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi. But admirers aren't necessarily clones, and while Polar Fleet is very Sabbath-minded, no one will mistake Polar Fleet for Paranoid or Masters of Reality. Operator Generator's stoner rock not only owes a debt to Sabbath's influential metal, but also, to psychedelic rock and space rock. The moody "Soil of Lavamore," in fact, finds guest Jasper George playing the electric sitar -- an instrument that would be right at home on a psychedelic recording. As heavy and aggressive as most of the songs are, Polar Fleet never fails to be melodic. Some headbangers are only interested in brute force for its own sake, but melody and aggression are equally important to Operator Generator. Polar Fleet isn't perfect -- some of the songs are more memorable than others. Nonetheless, Operator Generator shows a fair amount of promise on this exciting, if imperfect, debut.

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