The Early Years (TMC)
by Craig Regala
Well, look at that, a vault dumper you may actually want, esp if you like their harder rockin’ gunk (languid, tasteful, Euro-toned stoner rock gunk). You may want it more than their last (A Book of Songs). I like that one, but I don’t demand constant riff pounding from these guys or Nectar or Queens Of The Stone Age or The Soundtrack Of Our Lives, or Kansas or Be Bop Deluxe, or Pond or a buncha rock bands that aren’t punk or metal but definitely are real rock bands.
Dynamics, space, melody, pacing, tempo changes: These are tools to get beyond the “riff+lead+duh=us” that fulfills the lowest common denominator of “stoner rock.” Mammoth Volume weave melodies and harmonic warmth snaked from classic rock – or their own innate feelings – into big fat tunes that smooth up into some sorta happy flute-wielding era Sabbath crossed into Zep’s “Dancing Days” without referencing anything you or me know about. A band that you could play for your “there hasn’t been a good band since Jethro Tull” uncle and still get some full-figured hip sway action going with your niece. Big bonus is you can then listen to it at home and feel… not alright about yourself, but something, and this shit’s supposed to make us feel something, right?
(PO Box 629 Port Washington, NY 11050)