Exposé Online banner

Desert Wizards — Raven
(Black Widow DW002-2, 2013, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2014-02-01

Raven Cover artIn 2007 four friends strongly influenced by 70s hard rock and psychedelic music put together Desert Wizards. They self-released an EP in 2008 and then a full-length album in 2010. Based on this release, Black Widow Records signed them and reissued their album in 2011. Now Black Widow has released their second album, Ravens. Desert Wizards are Mambo (vocals, bass, and guitar), Gito (lead guitar and backing vocals), Anna (organ and vocals), and Dallas (drums). Ravens is a mixture of hard rock, blues rock, and psychedelic rock. The disc opens with “Freedom Rider,” that begins with the Easy Rider sound bite of Jack Nicholson’s and Dennis Hopper’s rant about haircuts and freedom. This song is a heavy rock number and though it opens the disc, feels out of place with the rest of the songs. But after five minutes there is an organ solo and the song abruptly shifts into The Doors territory, adding some interest. In my humble opinion, the best tracks on this disk are the psychedelic/gothic western numbers: “Babilonya,” “Back to Blue,” “Vampire Queen,” and the excellent cover of Pink Floyd’s “Childhood’s End” from Obscured by Clouds. The other songs: “Black Bird,” “Dick Allen’s Blues,” “Electric Sunshine,” and “Burn into the Sky” are hard rock, blues, and psych songs that really didn’t resonate with me. The other song of note is “Bad Dreams” that is fairly spooky. This is a mixed bag of music, indicative of a band finding its way. There is a lot of promise of good things to come.

Filed under: New releases, 2013 releases

Related artist(s): Pink Floyd, Desert Wizards

Latest news

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more

2017-09-06
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more

2017-08-22
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Azigza - Kriya – Combining influences from around the world can be a dangerous enterprise for musicians. There will always be some who call foul at the “appropriation” of sounds from other cultures, preferring...  (2004) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues