Full Fathom Five (Weathermaker Music)
By Craig Regala
Rockin’ warts ‘n’ all on their first release for their own imprint, Full Fathom Five (dig that cover!), favors the bluesy roll flow of the past couple (great) Clutch CDs. Live’s the place to visit this stoner rock jam-blues juggernaut who’ve absorbed all salient nutrients in their gobble path (no wonder so many gray-hair Zep fans dig their pan-rock groove), to move it on down the line. “IT” is a liquid. Full-bottom stomp rock that stimulates those conversant with classic rock’s best groove riders, The Rage Against The Machine/Fugazi/Primus tangle up, The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers kick-a-poo joy juice hillbilly hoo-ha, weird science, odd museums, and the fact that a band that gets tucked into alt/nü metal shows would probably rather play with The Allman Brothers.
For fans, the show’s a good one. For the uninitiated, you may wanna check their site for appropriate point of entry. FFF has a bit of distance between the voice and music – the singers rough here and there – but that’s what live is. I love it when he rolls his R’s (‘n’ eyes?), and the huge hip-swaddle of “The Elephant Riders” proves they like their oatmeal as lumpy as anyone’s. The disc was recorded at three shows in four places in four months spanning 12/07 – 03/08 and favors the recent feel as they blow through a buncha stuff through the decades. The key is to let these guys off the chain to wander out and draw it back in: Improvise, jam; whatever you call it. How many units have the same guys from the time your niece was born until she got her first tattoo at 17 and are as good as ever? Right. They got the tape-trader thing going ala Dead, Black Crowes, so if you like it, jump in and get a hoodie and a buncha live honk. Once you dose, it’s hard to live without the honk. Dose on, citizen.