Album number five from these Swedish stoner-rock stalwarts comes out late September, with domestic distribution by Century Media. I actually didn’t own any of Truckfighters‘ previous albums until I saw them play this crazy gig at a battleaxe-throwing venue in Toronto a couple years back—so I’m pleased to see this record receive a proper domestic release.
V kicks off with “Calm Before the Storm,” a mellower eight-minute number that takes a while to really get rolling. We’re four minutes in before we get our first barrage of Swedish stop-start riffage, though even then this has a lighter, airier feel than, say, “Desert Cruiser.” And it’s all too brief, before they go back to some mellow, bass-driven grooves, only to have a slight return around the 6:30 mark. “Hawkshaw” opens with some funky, 80’s-style drumming, although they put the pedal down on this one about 30 seconds in. Once again, however, we get a soft, mellow verse building to a riff-heavy chorus…which is a bit of a letdown on back-to-back tracks.
Finally, on “The 1,” we get some fuzzy, crunchy riffs right off the bat, and while this one does have a bit more heft than its predecessors, the verses fall on the wimpier side once again. There are still shades of their stoner-rock past—such as the last couple minutes of “The Contract,” the great recurring riff on “Storyline” or most of “Fiend,” for that matter, but overall, this album kinda falls flat. For a band that really brings it live, I was expecting a little more energy from this one.