Volcana, "Goddess of Flame" (2017) Album Review

Updated on February 15, 2018
FatFreddysCat profile image

I've been collecting hard rock/metal CDs for more than 25 years and I love to share my discoveries with fellow rockers.

Volcana "Goddess of Flame" CD cover
Volcana "Goddess of Flame" CD cover | Source

Volcana: "Goddess of Flame"

Genre: Heavy/Stoner/Doom Metal

Release: Stormspell Records, 2017

The tiny-but-true label Stormspell Records is an outfit that wears its reverence for old-school '80s metal on their collective sleeves - hell, they even etch their slogan, "OLD FARTS STUCK IN THE '80s AND PROUD OF IT!" right into the backs of their CDs. I've reviewed a number of their releases over the past couple of years and 99 percent of the time, when I see the Stormspell logo I can usually count on hearing one of three classic metal sounds - European-style melodic speed metal, old-school toxic-waltzing mosh-pit thrash, or sword-swinging, poser-slaying power metal.

Therefore, Volcana's Goddess of Flame was an unexpected but nice change of pace from Stormspell's usual stock in trade. Don't get me wrong, it's still satisfyingly heavy and definitely pays tribute to the True Steele of Olde, but this down n' dirty, bearded bunch from the U.S. of A. hearkens back to the doomy, groovy sounds of the 1970s, when bands like Black Sabbath, Dust, and Pentagram were just beginning to crawl out of the primordial ooze to carve what would later be called "Heavy Metal" into the history of rock. Volcana is the brainchild of guitarist/vocalist Vic Stown of Ohio-based retro-thrashers Vindicator, who crafted the 11 tracks on this album during down time from his day gig. Goddess of Flame is the first full length Volcana recording, following up 2016's A Life Among Jackals 7-inch single. Stown handles rhythm guitars and lead vocals on the disc, backed by one-man rhythm section Glen Monturi (who also does time in Seven Witches and Mountain Kings) on bass and drums, and lead guitarist Jeff Potts (Gygax, Warbringer, Lich King). Together this trio has concocted a seriously heavy stoner/doom metal brew that should have leaf hounds and rivet heads alike banging their heads well into the night.

Volcana: "Scolopendra (Come Forward)"

The Songs...

"The Unwelcome" is a brief one-minute intro that sets the properly Sabbathy tone, calling headbangers to worship... and then the album slams into the first track proper, "Scolopendra Come Forward," which is five minutes of pure monolithic riffery topped by Stown's howling vocals. Stown may not be a great singer in the technical sense, but his hoarse delivery suits this style perfectly. Fun fact: I'm sure Volcana probably intended the word "Scolopendra" to conjure up images of some sort of massive world-destroying, Lovecraftian demi-god, but our pals at Wikipedia tells me that it is actually a species of unusually large centipede. (Ewww!) "Drone" is exactly what its title suggests -- another slow, chugging, bass-heavy dirge based around yet another gargantuan riff.

"Glory or Doom" and the title track will keep the air guitars goin' and the horns raised high, and "Merchant Lord" features some pretty sweet, melodic six-string noodling before it kicks into the crunchy body of the song. I detect a slight hint of Blue Oyster Cult influence on this track, and its squealing, rockin' guitar work would certainly do BOC's Buck Dharma proud. The heavy duty bottom end rises to prominence again in "Smoke and Terrors," as well as in the foreboding, awesome "The Black Mist." A razor-sharp riff lights the fuse on "We Stand," leading into the absolutely rip-snortin' "Witch Blade," whose rapid-fire drums and fast-picking guitar work will crash down on your head like a massive rock slide pouring down a mountainside. This track is the closest Volcana comes to approaching "thrash" velocity, and it's totally bad-ass! "Iniquitous Shores" closes the disc with a two minute "outro" of reverberating riff that slowly fades off into the distance, like Godzilla returning to the ocean after destroying Tokyo (again).

L-R: Vic Stown (Vindicator), Jeff Potts (Gygax), Glen Monturi (Seven Witches)
L-R: Vic Stown (Vindicator), Jeff Potts (Gygax), Glen Monturi (Seven Witches) | Source

Summing It Up

I guess it's pretty obvious by now that I dug the heck out of Goddess of Flame. Volcana kicks out the old school doom jams so admirably and authentically that they should've released this album on 8-track tape. (Hey, Stormspell: How about a special limited edition in that format? Just a thought!) This is the kinda stuff that would sound great being played through the stereo of a '70s style conversion van with a mural of a wizard or barbarian on the side panels, preferably through a cloud of smoke.

Goddess of Flame should please fans of not only Sabbath and B.O.C., but any and all of their retro-minded spiritual children, like Trouble, The Sword, Corrosion of Conformity, High on Fire, Priestess, or Monster Magnet (to name but a few). Break out the bell bottoms and the Grim Reaper bong, Volcana is here and they're ready to party. To that I raise my devil horns triumphantly and say "Doom on, brothers, doom on!!"

Volcana Discography:

A Lion Among Jackals (EP) - Austentized Records, 2016

Masters of Metal, Vol. 4 - Divebomb Records, 2017 (2 tracks on compilation album)

Goddess of Flame - Stormspell Records, 2017

© 2017 Keith Abt

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      DK 

      11 months ago

      It's on Stormspell, must be good! :)

    • bethperry profile image

      Beth Perry 

      11 months ago from Tennesee

      Sounds right up my alley, I'll have to check this one out! Thanks for posting.

    • Coffeequeeen profile image

      Louise Powles 

      11 months ago from Norfolk, England

      Sounds like an interesting album. Doom on, brother!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, spinditty.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://spinditty.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)