KYLESA — Exhausting Fire (review)

KYLESA — Exhausting Fire album cover Album · 2015 · Stoner Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4.5/5 ·
Unitron
Kylesa - Exhausting Fire

"Exhausting Fire" is the seventh studio album by stoner/sludge metal band Kylesa. This was my introduction to the band, I never heard of them until stumbling upon them on YouTube. I decided to take a listen to their newest album, and what I got was quite an interesting mix of influences.

In "Exhausting Fire", I hear influences all the way from Alice in Chains to Pink Floyd. The opening song 'Crusher' is easily my favorite on the album, opening up with chugging sludgy riffs and haunting vocals from Laura Pleasants. The song switches from the aforementioned chugging guitar to more mellow psychedelic passages reminding me slightly of some of Melissa Auf Der Maur's solo work. These two factors continue throughout the whole albums, with a mix of tracks being dominated by each different sound or both. 'Inward Debate' is another favorite of mine, and it constantly keeps a crushing guitar riff throughout.

The drumming is especially really impressive, the aforementioned song having interesting drum sounds. It's hard to explain, but in a lot of songs there's this sort of clicking noise. It almost sounds like the drummer is clacking the drumsticks together, which makes for quite the unique drum sound. The vocals on the album are also strong, especially the aforementioned haunting vocals of Laura Pleasants. Philip Cope's vocals are a bit more punk-y, which is a nice contrast with the eerie quality of Pleasants's vocals.

Another favorite song is 'Shaping the Southern Sky', which has a Black Sabbath feel to it. It has a driving yet doom-y riff, reminding me of some songs from "Master of Reality". It also has some psychedelic elements reminding me of "Meddle"-era Pink Floyd. Speaking of Black Sabbath, at the end of the album there is a cover of 'Paranoid'. This is a pretty interesting cover, as Kylesa slows the tempo way down to one of Black Sabbath's few faster songs. It brings a new interesting sound to a metal classic.

Overall, while the album does get a little weaker during the second half of the album, "Exhausting Fire" is an excellent album and certainly makes me want to look back in their discography. If you like sludgy doom mixed with psychedelic and punk, I highly recommend checking this out. Hope you found this review helpful.

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