Stoner rock/metal is a genre I have begun to love in recent months and I’ve been extensively researching the back catalogues of bands such as Kyuss, Truckfighters and Bongripper. One band that I recently came across was Hotel Wrecking City Traders, after seeing them at the Hole in the Wall in Colchester (read my report here) I purchased their album Ikiryo without hesitation. It’s safe to say I was pleasantly surprised by the final product.
The most interesting thing about the band is that there are only two members. Brothers Ben Wrecker (drums) and Toby Wrecker (guitar) have created a dynamic and interesting addition to the ever expanding stoner scene. From the optimistic sounding opener of ‘Breath’, to the space odyssey of closer ‘Ikiryo’, the album is one that fans of the genre should definitely be in a hurry to check out. The influence of their peers is clearly recognisable – with the riffs of Kyuss appearing in ‘Tetryl’, the influence of the California desert is clear throughout. The album hits hard and fast at points but that is by no means a criticism as it hits home during some of the faster sections. The lack of a bass guitar or vocals didn’t matter to me as I felt they wouldn’t add anything to it.
The album is best described as a journey that starts off well and despite a few bumps along the way, gets to its destination safely. Despite being only five tracks long, Ikiryo is a voyage every stoner metal fan should take.
Best Track: Breath, Dance the Hempen Jig
3. Dance the Hempen Jig
Hotel Wrecking City Traders are:
Ben Wrecker – Drums
Toby Wrecker – Guitar