Torche - Harmonicraft
Volcom, April 2012
As a straight-ahead hard rock band Torche doesn’t fit into any trendy musical niche, and it’s hard not to like their no-nonsense songwriting. Large doses of distortion on the guitars lean their sound towards a stoner/doom metal band, but Torche is generally not that heavy. A notable exception is “In Pieces”, in which a bone-crunching riff thunders along with some pounding drums. “Letting Go” kicks Harmonicraft off in a catchy, rhythmic fashion, following by “Kicking”, which sounds poppy until the heavy riff slams in for the chorus. Some short bursts of fast, heavy tracks such as “Sky Trials” and “Walk It Out” mix up the pace of the album, which generally trends toward a slow to midpaced tempo throughout. Harmonicraft is generally an easy listen, with its 12 songs clocking in under 40 minutes. Despite all these admirable traits, the album tends to drag a bit in the second half but is saved by the interesting instrumental title track. The real strength of Torche is their ability to write short, impactful songs heavy enough to appeal to core stoner rock fans while retaining strong melodies and pop sensibilities to draw in the hipster crowd. Harmonicraft should continue to establish Torche as fresh alternative within the stoner rock scene. While the album isn’t a game-changer, it’s a solid effort that stands apart. Torche is every bit as good live, so get out and see them if you haven’t already.
Click on either picture to see more photos of Torche on October 5, 2010 while supporting High On Fire with Kylesa.