Germany’s Kadavar is one of the best psychedelic/stoner/retro bands around. I remember being introduced to them through their 2015 masterpiece, Berlin. So when they dropped their fourth album Rough Times, I had high expectations.
The album has expanded on previous works and includes a few new twists and turns. For those of you that are new to Kadavar, this german power trio plans good old fashioned 70’s worshipping psychedelic hard rock. I mean look at the guys. It reminds me of a Badfinger band photo. Singer/guitarist Christoph “Lupus” Lindemann has this great almost Robert Plant-like vocal style that evokes the great 60’s and 70’s blues-fueled heavy rock that almost everyone loves. The real trick to band like this, is to be able to do it in way that doesn’t sound cheesy or blatantly ripped off. Kadavar manages to make their music sound true. It sounds like it should be from that era, but it also sounds fresh and modern in its own way.
Berlin was fucking LOUD. Rough Times has taken down the volume a bit (even if only a bit) but has beefed up some of the heavier parts. Songs like “Skeleton Blues” and “Into The Wormhole” bring in some more Black Sabbath style riff-worship more associated with the danker stoner/sludge genre (think any band with the word ‘bong’ in their name) and that’s something I don’t normally associate with Kadavar. It works though. It also doesn’t make it seem as if the band is changing their sound, they are simply adding to it.
One of the other oddballs on this record is the French spoken word “A L’Ombre du Temps”. Granted, its an outro, but its still different. My personal favorites are more of the hard rocking numbers. “Die, Baby, Die” is probably my top pick. Remember when I said they turned down the volume just a hair? This is one of those songs. However, its still heavy as all get out…and its got a great dark vibe that was missing on previous albums. Other numbers like “The Lost Child” continue the 70’s acid rock vibe Kadavar are known for.
All in all this is a solid album from a solid band.