Sea of Green
Northern Lights (TMC)
by Brian Varney
Boy, if the term “stoner rock” was ever invented for a single band, this is it. These guys sound like they smoke a whole lotta pot, a suspicion confirmed by a glance through the press kit full of hippie “discover the beauty of the world through cannabis” claptrap. However, a quick listen through this 26-minute EP makes their hippie leanings suddenly seem a lot less important. Musically, Sea of Green seems to exist at the halfway point between Monster Magnet’s Spine of God LP and the Swervedriver song “Duel.” In other words, it’s loud, fuzzy, and drug-riddled, but with the psychosis of Monster Magnet replaced by the elegiac yearning of Swervedriver. This seemingly bizarre mixture (until you hear it, then it makes perfect fucking sense) gels best on the mesmerizing “If You Want My Soul,” a pulverizing, swirling vortex with a catchy chorus. It shouldn’t work – in fact, it should be horrible – but it does. Only once does the band falter (“Change With Me,” a simpering hippie ballad with too many flowers and not enough dirt), a pretty good ratio for first-timers.
For those strictly into the heavy stuff, this might be a bit of a letdown – but the psych thing has always been a big part of this stoner/desert shit. It’s a nice, organic progression from the starting point (i.e. Kyuss), and it sounds good to boot. True, it’s not the brutal kick in the nuts you’ve come to expect from TMC releases, but who wants to be kicked in the nuts all the time? A few kicks in a row might really start things hurting, y’know?
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