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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Review: Pander - Fierce Self

Pander is ready to bring you some delicious stoner of Dutch soil. Delicious, because of the guitar parts that seamlessly interweave: melodies that sound cheerful, supported by pleasant sounding but more heavy guitar riffs and drums. The entire sound of „Fierce Self” by Pander is lighter than the stoner I myself often listen to (which leans more towards doom I guess), but that doesn’t mean the sound of this band is mellow. The sound of this band is epic.

Most (guitar-)parts sound cheerful, but not everything in line with this band is cheerfully. I must honestly say that Pander was an unknown band to me, but some quick research shows that during the recording of „Fierce Self”, co-founder of Pander Andre Bouma passed away because of illness. A heavy loss, of course… But their music doesn’t sound morbid or anything because of that. It’s more the opposite. „Fierce Self” sounds - as I said - epic. Heavy epic. HEPIC!

Take for example opening-track At The Shore. You hear and feel how much low there is in the drums. So powerful. Not to overthrow. No kidding. It’s just IN YOUR FACE, and I like that there. That heavy sound actually continues the entire record: there is not a single stop, the music just rumbles over you. The whole gets an even better load when you realize that some of the guitar solos were played by the deceased guitarist Andre. I think it’s really awesome the band decided to keep those parts. A real tribute.

Pander presents nine short, but strong songs on „Fierce Self”. Some songs are structurally something similar, but that also allows you to listen this record from beginning to end pretty easily. This is music to put on in the car as loud as possible as you tear down the highway. That’s the vibe I get from this music. And every now and then I hear a little bit of Black Sabbath and Yama (also a Dutch stoner band), especially in the vocals. Just to be clear; those are compliments.

Written by Tim van der Zanden

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