The Quill

Voodoo Caravan

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Voodoo Caravan Review

by Gary Hill

The Quill is a Swedish hard rock/metal act that combines the best of classic hard rock with alternative and metal. The group's influences come from across the spectrum, but some show up more obviously than others. First, it is easy to spot Black Sabbath and Deep Purple. Give a listen to "Sell No Soul" for a quick example of those. They also chart into Led Zeppelin territory. Check out "(Wade Across) The Mighty River" and think Led Zeppelin III. All their influences are not so old-school, though. Indeed, tracks like "Until Earth Is Bitter Gone" showcase a Soundgarden sort of texture and "Overlord" screams Corrosion of Conformity. The group is being billed as "stoner rock," and it does exhibit healthy doses of that variant of the jam band sound, but that is certainly not the whole picture. The Hammond B-3 organ lends a great retro texture to this release, but much of the power and magic of the group comes from the incredible vocal talents of Magnus Ekvall, who really pulls it all together with style. It is not often that a band of this genre is elevated to greatness by the singing (Judas Priest comes to mind), but that is definitely the case with this one. The album shows a versatility and mastery of both songwriting and arranging that are not present in much hard rock these days. Let's hope these guys stay true and rocking for a long time, because they may become the hard rock legends of this era on which future bands are based.

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