Stoner rock

Stoner rock (or stoner metal) is a musical subgenre which combines elements of traditional heavy metal, psychedelic rock, blues rock, acid rock, and doom metal. Stoner rock is typically slow-to-mid tempo and features a heavily distorted, groove laden bass-heavy sound, melodic vocals, and «retro» production. The genre emerged during the early 1990s and was pioneered foremost by the Californian band Kyuss and influenced many groups like Metallica (albums «Load» and «Reload»), Soundgarden, Corrosion of Conformity, and others.

Birth: 1992 Bloom: 1997

The founders of this style alongside their followers often say that they prefer to smoke marijuana. And «stoner» in slang means pothead, maybe that`s why the genre`s called stoner rock. Musicians also claim that marijuana effect goes well with slow and psychedelic riffs of stoner rock. Gradually, the term «stoner metal» has appeared as a harder subgenre of stoner rock.

Stoner rock is stylistically close to the term «desert rock» that was used for describing music by Kyuss, which emerged from the Palm Desert, California, the USA. These terms are quite similar, so they became almost synonymous.

In 1992, Kyuss emerged from the Palm Desert Scene with Blues for the Red Sun. Critics have hailed it as «a major milestone in heavy music», while NME described their music as an attempt to figuratively melt «a hundredweight of hot desert sand into metal». In 1992, San Jose doom metallers Sleep released their album Sleep`s Holy Mountain. It became a favorite of the heavy metal press and the band was heralded, along with Kyuss, as leaders of the emerging stoner scene. These two bands were the first to introduce a «trippy» groove to their doom-influenced sound. During the same year, New Jersey`s Monster Magnet released their debut album Spine of God, which displayed fewer metal influences but was psychedelic and sludgy, in the vein of their Californian peers. In 1994, San Francisco`s Acid King and Britain`s Acrimony released their debut albums, both of which adopted this psychedelic approach to doom metal. Other bands from this era include Fu Manchu, Clutch, Sons of Otis and Corrosion of Conformity. In 1995, there was formed famous British group – Orange Goblin.

The band Kyuss broke up in 1995 and gave a birth to a number of groups such as Unida, Slo Durn, Hermano, Mondo Generator, Brant Bjork and the Bros, and the most famous of them – Queens of the Stone Age.

Also read: Blues, Psychedelic rock

Umbrellate style: Rock

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