ALBUM REVIEW: Buena Madera – Zero

BUENA MADERA is a small band of three artists from Padua, Italy. Their band is comprised of Renato Rancan on guitar and vocals, Christian Galletta on bass and Mirco Giordani on drums but have incorporated the input from Enrico Baraldi (Ornaments, sound engineer of Zu). Having experimented with different sounds and drawing from their experiences on the live stage, they have found a style and sound that fits. Zero is their first release and has been two years in the making.

When approaching this album, I was informed that it labelled itself as stoner rock. Not sure what this meant but happy to dive into any form of rock, I signed on straight away. Looking at the bio, I was even more unsure of what to expect. However, when I started to listen, I grew more and more impressed. When you start the album you’re hit with the whiny screech of guitar and blare of uncomfortable vocals. At first, it jars you but then it starts to settle in your mind and becomes a soothing melody in the back of your brain.

I love the instrumental sounds presented within these tracks. The different melodies and beats come together to create a mesmerising wave of sound that just carries you off and makes you want to lay in the grass and watch the clouds whilst your brain stretches and takes a long break. I wonder if this is what they mean by stoner rock? Is it meant to give you that relaxed space to unwind from the stress of the world? In any case the music on this album makes me think of work done by NIRVANA, in the reaction of relief I feel listening to them at the end of the day. It even feels good when the guitar breaks into one of its screechy moments. Like someone is giving your brain a good exfoliant wash.

However, when you focus enough to listen to the lyrics, you come down to earth with a small but prominent bump. It may be due to the lyrics not being written in the lyricists first language, but they lack meaning or sense. Not being able to make out the lyrics clearly, a fact that does not upset me as the sound of the vocalist adds the whole sound scape, I looked them up to see if that would expand my experience. I would not recommend this. It is clear that they were aiming for a meaningful mix of love songs and melodies about creating music, but I feel like the lyrics let this album down. For example, the lyrics from SPIA left me feeling rather confused:

‘Don’t look down on the roof, you’ll look so clever.

It doesn’t move anymore, The wind is lower.’

In total, whilst I am still not sure what stoner rock is as a definition, I thoroughly enjoyed this album, it will be on my shelf for when I want to unwind and let go. I think the effect they have created with their music is a great experience for anyone listening. I believe that this is a band to keep an eye on, I think they are set to be a great act to follow. I wish them all the luck in their future career.

Rating: 8/10

Words: Steph Warren

Zero is out now.

Find BUENA MADERA on Facebook.

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