I’ve been a big fan of this French outfit since their Whispering Wild Stories album, which was practically the perfect blend between Fu Manchu and Eyehategod. Denizen have put out a couple more albums since then, before this three-song EP, which I presume to be a stop-gap of sorts before their next full-length.
“The Fall” gets right down to riffage, with a groovy, bluesy head-nodder that sets the tempo before a heavy, doomy breakdown just shy of the 1:30 mark. There’s a bit of an odd echo effect on the vocals initially, which are far removed from their previous sludge barks. Some of the extended notes clearly put a strain on this singer’s range. But with riffs this tasty and grooves this heavy, the vocals are just a minor setback.
“Holding the Sea” actually has a bit more of a desert rock feel in its mellow grooves and pulsating drums—at least for the verse, before they stomp on the fuzz pedal during the chorus. The overall effect kinda reminds me of Truckfighters, back when they were still reasonably heavy. Oh, and the angry sludge barks do return, for a 20-second cameo near the end.
“Tambourine Blues” is a pretty straight-forward boogie rock number, riding a heavy stoner groove into a ripping solo, although the vocals are a bit more of a distraction here. Il faut changer le chanteur, mes amis!