Elephant Stone, a Canadian band with innovative style, have released their second album to date. Fronted by Rishi Dhir, who is already a household name in the psychedelic rock family, Elephant Stone released an eponymously named album this year.
Based in Montreal, Elephant Stone was formed in 2009 by Rishi Dhir. Dhir, who self confesses ‘The Beatles’ and ‘The Kinks’ to be musical influences, is a sitarist and bassist. The frontman is not only a former member of ‘The High Dials’; he is one of the most sought after satirist’s in the music industry, having clocked up experience with bands such as Brian Jonestown Massacre. Elephant Stone incorporate a heavy sense of Indian tradition into their music, using instruments such as the sitar, tabla and dilruba.
The opening track, ‘Setting Sun’, is typically psychedelic rock. Reverbed and musky vocals melt into swashbuckling guitars, and the Asian influence is not dramatically apparent. ‘Heavy Moon’ delves a little deeper, although more emphasis seems to be placed on guitar and vocal effects. However, a mysterious edge to simplistic vocals causes Heavy Moon to be another excellent track. ‘Masters Of War’ is a little lighter, and more indie sounding in essence. ‘A Silent Moment’ is a masterpiece of mantra sounding vocals and beautifully played sitar. The Indian influence is strongest on this song, and it is perhaps one of the best tracks on the album. Every element of the psychedelic rock and Asian instrumentals collide on ‘Sally Go Round The Sun’, which is without a doubt my personal favourite. The gentle beginning is nullified by heavy guitars, before swiftly ending as a short song. ‘The Sea Of Your Mind’ is another track that is well put together, fully fledged with all the makings of a psychedelic classic.
Although this was only my first introduction to Elephant Stone’s music, I am exceedingly impressed with their new album. Credit is due for taking an abstract idea, that is not widely used, and making it sound listenable to the masses. The Indian influence is not in your face; it merges effortlessly with the rock, increasing and decreasing in intensity from song to song. No gimmicks, just superb music, which is exactly the way it should be. 8.5/10
ELEPHANT STONE US TOUR DATES:
Nov 09 Portland OR Bunk Bar^
Nov 10 Vancouver BC Electric Owl^
Nov 11 Seattle WA The Comet Tavern^
Nov 14 San Francisco CA Brick & Mortar Music Hall*
Nov 15 Santa Ana CA The Constellation Room*
Nov 16 Los Angeles CA Bootleg Theater*
Nov 17 San Diego CA The Casbah*
Nov 21 Montréal QC Petit Campus+