Sasquatch – II – Review


II (Small Stone)
by Brian Varney

There’s very little difference between this album and the band’s debut, yet I’m really enjoying this one, while the debut never really connected with me. It’s the same heavy classic-rock power-trio thump, stoner rock by way of Walsh-era James Gang, Red Album-era Grand Funk, and Ted Nugent’s debut. II doesn’t sound appreciably better than the debut, and I’m pretty sure there have been no personnel upgrades.

The change, I suppose, is the songs themselves. It’s been awhile since I spun the debut, but I can’t bring a single tune to mind. II, on the other hand, seems to usher in a bump in songcraft. A tune like “Seven Years to Saturn,” with its gradual build to a swirly, classic rock radio-worthy coda, shows a craftsmanship that I don’t remember from the debut. Others, like “The Judge,” combine fuzzed-out riffs with choruses that actually stick to the brain, a lamentably rare combination.

From the sound of the two records, I’m guessing Sasquatch is a band who thrive in the live setting. However, with encouraging signs like the songs I’ve already mentioned, the band seems to have succeeded in making a record that stands on its own merit, rather than acting merely as code for the real-deal live performance.