Dealing with worlds different from metal is always really interesting, especially when we're confronted with hybrid styles that flirt with it. This is exactly what we can find on this album: a take on alternative rock often showing an aggressiveness — both on vocal and instrumental terms — typical of metal, without leaving other influences out nevertheless.
PurpleHaze Ensemble formed in Krakow as PurpleHaze, initially playing a quite simple form of stoner rock. After a pair of line-up additions, the band adopted a different way of approaching composition, going on to make their musical style more complex and aware. The band's creative fury came into being on the eponymous album released through Unquiet Records in October 2013. Forty-three minutes over six tracks (none of which clocking in at under six), and the songs are built uncommon structures and not always easy to assimilate.
Six unexpectedly mature tracks for a band still at its first official release, drawing inspiration from a wide range of quite notable influences (Alice in Chains and Deftones in particular). Riffing is really solid, and the vocalist Macias displays his versatile skills with various styles flirting with nu metal, stoner and alternative rock from the '90s. If "Siren's Song" is the usual fast-paced opener, "Haunt The Freak" evokes the rawest episodes by Alice In Chains already from the title; with "Kickin' Curbs With A Thin Stick" the quartet attempted to show a different face, slowing it down and proving they feel comfortable on different musical territories as well, before accelerating in the last bit.
If the discomforted '90s are your musical home, as depicted by Jerry Cantrell and friends, you can find them filtered through contemporary awareness in "PurpleHaze Ensemble". In a music world where clones of those big names just pop out everywhere, it is not easy to find a band actually capable of entertaining and of being memorable despite not inventing anything new, this is not an album for one-off listens. PurpleHaze Ensemble has managed to put the right amount of irons in the fire and the fans of these styles will like it, perhaps they will also succeed in catching the attention of someone who has lost their hopes regarding this particular scene.