***** Review by Roni *****
Mircea Petrescu “Hothshot Eagle” – vocals and rhythm guitar.
Mihnea Ferezan “Panda Elixir” – guitars and crazy solo’s
Victor Ferezan “Vava” – bass and low end
Mihai Nicolau “Baby Jesus” – drums.
Music by RoadkillSoda.
Lyrics by Mircea Petrescu with “Freebird” lyrics by Mihai Nicolau
“Space Echo & Time” is RoadkillSoda’s 4th album recorded in a mountain cabin with Tudor Scanteie [Negative Core Project] producing and mixing. It’s an acoustic album that include new versions of earlier releases and 4 songs that were written and created during that weekend then recorded in a single session. It’s released in a limited number of vinyl albums and digitally. There’s a handful of vinyl left, so if you still collect and listen to them, snag one.
Initially, I thought that I would do a comparison of the previous versions with the acoustic versions of some of the songs. Nope, I changed my mind on that one. There isn’t any comparison, but if you are already a fan and have enjoyed those songs…imagine these guys in a small smoky bar setting and doing them toned down so that you aren’t literally reverbed out of the place. So chill for just a moment and let these guys take you down their own rabbit hole. ….(which may be where their nicknames came from…no clue, but I’m flowing with it). From the steel strings strumming, clean straight forward percussion and the scratchy scales and range of the vocals; the layout of the tracks are perfect in letting us experience the high and low waves of this carpet ride.
Mihai Nicolau leads Mihnea & Victor into a pleasant rhythm as it opens with “Made of Stone” and then we are hit with Mircea’s voice and I did a total double take at my stereo. He adds an edgy, rough scratch that surprises, yet completes this unique fusion of stoner metal meets southern rock kissed with hints of blues and dances with ambient qualities. It didn’t take long for me to start falling in with their experience as I found myself singing along half way through “Wrong”.
While “Aura Lake” (the longest track lasting 12:43) had been played live a few times, this was their first take on a more acoustic style version and when the ambient qualities are met with Mircea’s rich tones and “Panda Elixer” there is a time echo resembling “Space” from the old Grateful Dead shows mating with Yes and controlled by “Baby Jesus”…..(oh help me, did I just type that?). It’s a beautiful head trip. Reality slices through and brings us back down to earth with “Can’t Take control” and finishes with “Freebird”….no, do no mistake this song for concert halls with lit lighters of the past though it does have a mellow southern rock type of instrumental feel. In fact, I thought it was just an instrumental until we hit the finish line of the last third of the song and the band has decided that we could finally end this ride.
Overall, this album has surprised me. When I listened to the first couple of tracks, I knew that I would enjoy it…ok… What surprised me was that as I continue to listen to it, it has grown and gotten richer in my veins. While these guys are from Romania and have played several places around Europe including Greece, if they ever play a gig in my area, it will be a “must see” show.
Space Echo & Time
Released December 22, 2016