Jan 3, 2011

Domo - S/T

A new year, and a new band: Domo! I was not familiar with the band, but according to the bio sheet they formed in January 2010. Hailing from Spain, these musicians “[practice] psycodelic [sic] and electrifying rock Domo [building] its foundations on experimentation and psychedelia. Using the classic structures of Hard Rock as a starting point they run through a wide variety of musical styles.” Actually, this record is their 2nd album, because the accompanying information sheet mentions a first record in August 2010. I couldn’t find it. iTunes didn’t get the track titles of Domo’s 2nd release, so I’m stuck with track number 1 through 7. As I was listening to the intro I was thinking, when will the vocals kick in? They do, but very sparingly. I think that’s a shame, because the music delivered on this sophomore disc isn’t that interesting or engaging to hold ones attention for one listen.

So, using Hard Rock as a starting point, they run through a wide variety of musical styles. Well, I don’t think that’s exactly true. There is one musical style they practice, and that’s just rock. To warrant the inclusion of other musical styles would be too much of an honor I think. It’s plain (light) psychedelic rock, but certainly no kraut rock. I have relistend to a lot of Neu!, Hawkwind, Faust, Can, Cluster, Harmonia lately, and as I was listening to these bands I couldn’t help but notice what a wonderfully rich, exciting musical time it was when these aforementioned bands happened. I saw Cluster a couple of years ago, and still Roedelius and Moebius are way out there. Sometimes the moniker kraut rock is used to pinpoint a certain spacy psychedelic sound, but in my opinion kraut rock’s essence is often a certain mix of electronic driven ‘beats’ (but not quite nowadays ‘beats’) coupled to vanguard psychedelic rock elements and progressive elements. The name kraut rock is quite generic of course, and the hallmarks are still able to surprise me when they move along my iTunes lists or when they cross my turntable. My ‘take’ on kraut rock is of course formed by those bands I like to listen to, and it’s therefore limited to my own taste and comparisons to other musical styles.

According to Domo, they “make music using dark riffs, trying to create intense atmospheres.” That’s not exactly true either, because I can honestly not find anything dark in their riffing. The mentioned intense atmospheres are of course open to each’s interpretations, but what I hear are basically soundscapes, which could easily function as a soundtrack.

I don’t know exactly what to tell you more. The music is okay when looked at it objectively, but – and I know I used this argument times before – there are a LOT of great bands out there, so as listeners we can’t help but compare the albums of new bands to an already high standard. In my opinion, more vocals would help a lot. Plus, the tracks take too long to actually get somewhere, so you’d have to have a pretty ‘long’ attention span to get into the tracks before something interesting happens. They are skilled musicians I think, and they have the sound right, and I look forward to a next release. I’m interested in the way Domo will develop their sound. There is a ‘hidden’ track at the end of track number 7, and that’s actually the track I like the best: it’s raw, it’s heavy and it feels authentic. If Domo would set itself to make more of these heavy ass tracks, we would all be happy pandas.

You can watch some sweet live material here: Domo's YouTube Channel
Review Written By Sandrijn van den Oever

6 / 10

Domo @ Myspace
Domo @ Facebook


  1. I think this review isnt objective. Im not insterested of what you think about what is kraut rock or what you like to hear, Ive listen some Neu! Hawkwind, Faust, Can, Cluster, Harmonia, Guru Guru and some other... You re focus a lot about that youve think that is a kraut album and it isnt. I think that you probably could make some other thing than analize their bio, and in your opinion tell what is or what isnt true...
    And by the way this is the first album of the band, not the second.

  2. Damn right it's not objective :).

  3. You couldnt find the first record because this is the first record ;)

  4. This is like, a less heavy and more drawn out version of Earthless. The songs are too long...one has to have a good attention span to listen to a whole track. Where as with Earthless...the groove keeps you hooked in.

    Now I'm not saying these guys suck or anything like that. The musicianship is spot on, but the vocals...why do they bother? A 10 minute song with 30 seconds of vocals seems kind of odd and out of place....

    This band should get together with a film director and do the soundtrack to some desert style movie. That'd be cool and very fitting...actually that'd be really badass. But do I foresee them headlining Roadburn anytime soon though? Not likely...

  5. Well I think is a great space psychedlia record actually!! I totally dig it! It makes my mind blows off!!
    Pure and intense, completely recomendable!!

  6. I must say I liked this album quite a lot, even if I'm not Spanish hahaha (ok, I'm Italian and I like spaghetti but part of my family actually came from Austrian Tyrol, so I have an alibi, eh eh).
    I explained why I liked this on Sludgeswamp.
    To sum it up, for me there's nothing new in this album, of course, but it satisfied me, in terms of sounds and atmospheres, as Blaak Heat Shujaa's tunes did.
    Also I found that there were some features in these guys that attracted me, in particular the drumming. I found it unusually powerful and, well, I liked it a lot. It was "different" from what I remember from other psychedelic bands.
    As to the length of the tracks noted by Justin, well, I don't find it so strange to see psychedelic tracks lasting more than 3-4 minutes. I felt those longish tracks flowing away, let's say, normally. I mean, if you have to build up a spacey guitar jam you need some time ...

    Anyway, of course any review is free opinion and is much based on personal taste, impression, mood, etc.. It's risky, as it may not always be favourable, even if one did well.

  7. Wow! Great review Mari! You also mentioned the classic south african and spanish psych scene, Tapiman and Pan y Regaliz that I also love. Im totally agree with you, think this guys take a risk and do it well, I just love the album and that long and psychedelic songs! And the cover art is amazing!

  8. I really loved this album, from beginning to end. In my opinion it doesn´t need vocals, and the few vocals it has only add to the spycodelic mood. I feel music is like a journey, and during that journey you need to take your time to enjoy the view and smell the flowers as they say. That´s why I loved this album, cause it really takes you on that journey, and every song is a diferent ambience. Loved it, loved it, loved it. And I tell you, if they ever play at Roadburn, I´ll be there front row.

  9. Well, of course you have to have a good attention span.

    This is heavy psychedelia and not Clutch or Down.

    This is about fuzzy guitars and psychedelic landscapes, you must listen to it with attention. Of course they are not earthless, but it´s a pretty good album and i would love to see them live.


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