logo
Currently Browsing: Music Reviews
Jul
21

Conan Neutron & The Secret Friends – The Art of Murder – Music Review

Conan Neutron & The Secret Friends – The Art of Murder – Music Review Conan Neutron & The Secret Friends The art of murder neutronfriends.bandcamp.com Mixing parts The Cramps, Elvis Costello & the Attractions with good old get down and rock Diamond Spirit Company (a local 80’s rock band that could really get it up on stage). Conan Neutron and the Secret Friends reminds me of the party at the cool girls house. Oh it’s going to get busted, but man are we going to have a good time until the cops show up. What you just read was my first impression of this release, and what I thought I would do is take a couple weeks in between listens and then see how I felt about this album then. So, here we go. Coming on like Queens of the Stone Age’s little brother with “Avid Fan”, cause even the break down sounds a little like the band has been hanging out in QOTSA’s neighborhood. Is the singer yelling “You woke me up” in this song? For some reason, possibly my advancing age, in the song “Eat the Rude” it sounds like he’s saying “I eat the Root” but like I said I chalk that up to the fact that my ears are probably clogged from listening to music with my earbuds jammed in my ears and my status as an old fucking idiot. “We don’t invent our natures” could be a lost track from a Sons of Freedom album. Either from GUMP or their S/T release. I like SOF, got into them in college, and while I’m not so sold on their TEX album, I do enjoy their first two. So something that calls to mind a band I liked in College many years ago, will always have a extra push up the likability ladder with me. There is no breathing room in these songs, every cranny is filled. Not sure I like the mix, everything is the same volume, vocals are hard to hear and muddied in the mix. I would like the vocals to be up a little bit, no they don’t have to dominate the sound, but I would like to be able to hear them better, then again what with my previously mentioned shitting ear holes, Conan Neutron could be standing next to me singing and I probably would still wonder what he was talking about. Dear lord in hell, I need to get my ears checked. ***Brad Bugos brad@fatrobotradio.com wrote this review. He found out recently that...
Jun
25

Forty Feet Tall – RED DRESSED- Album Review

Forty Feet Tall – RED DRESSED- Album Review Forty Feet Tall red dressed facebook.com/fortyfeettall Like any good down and dirty rock album, and by that I mean fuzzy guitars and a sense that Woodstock ’94 was only a bit muddy, this band realizes that to engage they have to keep the time with their dirty fingernails. A good tour pairing for this band would be a really good Champaign/Urbana band called the Dirty Feathers. The Feathers are a bit more seventies AM rock radio I think than Forty Feet, but they both reside in the same town, just different parts of it, if you know what I mean. “red dressed” opens up with a “Sabotage” like beat, then transitions into the bands strengths, straight rock with a groove, something that the Black Crowes wished they could have gotten back to after co-opting it after their first release. A nice slide guitar slow version of “run through the jungle”, a nice way to play a classic rock cut but make it your own. They make it slower, and a bit more melodramatic (if only because the narrator sounds less like running than in the original than tired and ready to give it all up and be captured or killed). “Two Shots” calls to mind what the Black Keys were so popular for just a few years ago, it’s funny how those things change. It also shows the fickle nature of being a popular band. There is no way it can be sustained. Not at a high level. Which is something I’ve been thinking on for awhile now. We all want to achieve success, we all like admiration and doing something for a living that we love, but when does that become reaching for it and in the end a burden and a box you’ve locked yourself into that only breaking up will let you out of? I don’t have the answer. But listening to bands like this makes me hope they achieve success but a part of me hopes they just continue to make music they are happy with regardless of the outcome. I think they would enjoy that more, and I think I would too. A good four song EP. Can the band sustain this kind of energy and playing through a full album? I’m not sure we ever need to answer that question. Why release a twelve song album now adays? Really there is no need for it. If I were this band or the management,...
Jun
12

Enslaved- The Sleeping Gods- Music Review

Enslaved The Sleeping Gods enslaved.no by norse Coming on like very few other heavy bands, especially those with the demonic growl or spit spewing demon choked hell vomit vocals, this band makes listening to this release a lot of fun. Not only fun in the fact that it’s good but also in the fact that it’s fun to find the next jog in the deserted overgrown road they might take. To simply put it in one category would be to doom this release, well not doom it cause a lot of people would like it if it was doom metal, to sitting in a bin with other less directional and talented bands. It’s way to interesting and flavored with so many smokey brines to play it only on doom metal night at the local cavern club. Sure some of this is your basic growling from the depths of dirt humanities flooding basement of filthy lies type of metal, its what the band creates outside of the vocals that really makes this one interesting to me. They could have just went the old doom route, peedling along bashing every god damn mail box in their way, fighting with the neighborhood dogs and spewing hate towards the porch covering unescapables. But they didn’t. They took their time to weave it all together, it’s like they actually give a shit about being able to present you your own nose right after they ripped it off your face. How did they do that? None of these songs ever seems overlong or wasted. It’s something that is lost on creative people sometimes, you see it all the time in the movies. Sure you have seventy minutes to fill on a compact disc, but you don’t need to fill all that. Things can breath, escape and flow but there is no reason to continuously pound your listeners over the head when your going the same direction for eight minutes. You should go to their web site and check out their bio, these guys have been together since 1991 and won four consecutive Norwegian Grammy’s. Interesting band, interesting contemporary extreme metal. I’ll be keeping an eye on this band as they seem to release music, sixteen things since their inception, and if you like extreme metal with a lot of points of interest and turns in the muddy dark path, then this band should have your attention. **Why review music? This is a classic example of...
Jun
6

ALARIC- End of Mirrors- Music Review

Alaric End of Mirrors Neurot Recordings Facebook.com/Alaric Why does Alaric stand out from the thousands of other bands that I hear through my podcast? This is the second time I have chosen to review one of their releases, both of them being full reviews. Why? Well let’s examine that, what does this band have that peaks my interest enough to sit down and write a music review. Wether you have written fifteen or a couple hundred or thousand like I have over these twenty nine years, it’s never easy to come up with things to say. So writing a full review really takes something from me, mostly because I’m dumb and I don’t know what to say. Let’s take “Wreckage” as an example. It’s slow dirgy blues number, heavy weighted metal pulling you down by the ankles into the black dirthy thickness of humanity gone sick and diseased. Or maybe that’s just something I’ve read into it and it’s really about having a paper route and one of the customers won’t pay you when they are supposed too. Point is? Well, it’s a really good song, with a distinct flavor of hopelessness that I enjoy, a fatal wiring in our human souls I look upon and feel comforted by. I think what really impresses me and makes me want to listen to this band in my own free time is that the music really fits a lot of how it is day to day, life and all that. Holy shit check out the Spinal Tap like break down towards end of “Mirrors”. What was I saying? Wait this isn’t some kind of stream of conscious thought piece, I can go back and look at what I said before. Why the hell am I still typing this? See, that’s what this music does for me. Not to say I’m floating on some kind of drug induced cloud playing hand ball against the closet door, its more of a state of rational, clear thinking. Or maybe I’m just some idiot sitting in his garage huffing copy toner. Hard to tell really. 1,2,3 Huff! Look, I know we are all fucked, its a bloody dirty mess out there. None of us make it out alive, most of us worse for the wear. However, there are those pockets of sublime escape that come along every now and then. They are short, very cramp spots in our universe but when they do open and...
Jun
1

Maradeen – Above the Horizon – Music Review

Maradeen Above the Horizon Maradeenband.com Hear their song “Living for the Weekend” on SLTM (the Podcast) Episode 267 “Living for the weekend” is a poppy charmer in the vein of Oregon’s Parson Red Heads and should be the first choice for the first single. Yeah, “Living for the Weekend” is a strong song for the band, good country beat, wonderful sweet harmonies. I would have lead off the album with this track. You can forgive it’s vacation commercial pretend importance. It’s not the bands fault if some company hijacks it some day for a commercial to promote their states tourism or sunshine product. “Lost in a dream” is just missing something, it’s a bit pedestrian in need of a dead hitchhiker or a plum fairy flying through the scene to give it a boost. Singer sounds a bit like a tired Kevin Thista. The Song “like a river” is what I imagine the offspring of the fellas in the legendary country group Alabama would sound like if they started their own band. Did he just say “Where did my jesus go”?”In “dealin with the devil”? Its not the song I would have put first, but that’s been mentioned above. Reminds me texturally of TPOH but only if Moe Berg didn’t have any of the teen angst. Alright, now that the album has sat with me for a few weeks, it’s time to put some new ears on this thing, which is something I recommend when reviewing a release. Our first impressions are always very primal and instinctive but I find that I flesh out my ideas better after repeated listens, then a break of a few weeks and another few listens. I do like the strings in the first song, nice touch. It helps break up a six minute plus song, but the song never feels laborious or extraneous. “living for the Weekend” is such a winner here . Just a good rambling down a country lane, beer in the back seat on a sunny spring day jaunty rocker. Good stuff. “Lost in a Dream” sounds like a different band, one that listened to a lot of 90’s pop music, and wondered what it would be like to be the Cranberries. “Back when the west was mine” reminds me of some great FM Rock radio I heard as a kid in the 1970’s. It would have fit perfect in between the Rolling Stones, and Steve Miller Band. It’s a...
Apr
9

Peaer – S/T- Music Review

Peaer S/T Tiny Engines I do like the guitar sound on this release. Sometimes I’ve noticed when bands get this sound, a kind of chiming perpendicular buzzsaw with the safety guard but it’s starting to come off sound, they tend to make it thin and a bit over distorted, Peaer mixes it right. “Third Law” has some nice harmonies, very well used, right emotional heft and completely integral to the feel of the song. I went to high school with a kid, oh lets call him J.C. Marsh, and he was a depressed kid. I liked him, very intelligent but never stuffy or condescending about it, a bit gothy and fun to hang out with for certain allotted periods of time. I just couldn’t, as a manic depressive, be around that much sadness, real or not, for any extended period of time. For me to expect that this person has remained the same all these years later is a bit of selfish narcissism on my part. “Sick” is catchy as hell and might be the most upbeat song about being tired of yourself. It wonders why you can’t be something else or at least change a marginal amount just so you can shift focus. Jesus, I’ve been in that town before, stayed a few years and almost didn’t make it out. **Brad Bugos wrote this review. He’s really sorry that his words couldn’t be more expressive or even more about the music, but things pop into his head, and they tend to be about how he feels emotionally awkward every time he takes a breath or moves. Thank god you’re not him. Email if you want brad@fatrobotradio.com or leave a message below. Thanks and happy arm huggery....
Mar
29

Satan – atom by atom – music review

Satan atom by atom Listenable Records Damn these guys rip it up, sounding like a Nugent riffed metal band with coherent clear vocals. I was surprised by what this is rather than what I thought it was going to be. Seriously, its like a late 70’s BOC like band took their riffs and melded them with mid 80’s metal band with lyrics about evolution being at its peak and end and satan. It’s a really good mix and it really works. Maybe I’m putting some of my own baggage ino this but that’s what happens with these things. But what I’m getting out of this is that we as humans have evolved as far as we can, so this is what you get. So anyone righteous or who follows a godly path cannot expect the rest of us to better ourselves morally because this is where we are at as a society/civilization. So to them, even if we don’t worship evil we might as well, we are on the wrong side of their history. So far into this run of shows this is my favorite release. Phenomenal guitar work. Check out the guitar solo in “fall of persephone” especially at the end of the song. WOW. I hope it’s okay to listen to a band called Satan who play old school metal with songs about evolution being at an end and fallen saviours, because I enjoyed the hell out of it. The end, the very end of civilization is upon us, no more cell phones, dynamite and pre-lubed condoms. It’s over. So why am I, as one of the doomed, rocking out at the edge of the black sea enjoying banging my head and throwing the two devil coronuto? It’s because the band up on the stage at the end of the world party is jamming. Sure they are reporting the findings of how we started our decent and became doomed, reporting back like some sick Ted Koppel hell bent on informing everyone of their follies and part in this exploding lost experiment. Is there time to be saved? Maybe but we don’t care cause the riffs are great, the solo’s kickin and the singing spot on majestic. That this band formed in 1979 and can still rip it up and produce this kind of wonderful metal, really speaks volumes of the talent in this band. My favorite thing that I listened to for this set of episodes of...
Mar
27

Maple Stave – V- Music Review

Maple Stave V Phratry Records Six short songs, I wish there were more. Well when I say short, the last four songs are over four minutes, but it just seems to move along at such a nice clip that the six songs are gone before you are ready for them to leave. I do like the displayed anger in the last song, kind of a Snapcase vibe, check out “Call Sign Spider” after you hear the song we are going to play. Good stuff. Listening to Maple Stave reminds me of Mission of Burma and how I found them in the late 80’s. I used to kick myself for not finding the band (or even other worthy bands sometimes as well) during their zenith. While Maple Stave and Mission of Burma share a certain feel, it’s Maple Stave’s style of music that began these thoughts. Or at least not what propogated them. I think we as a culture spend way too much time trying, and to what benefit?, to be the first to catch onto something. Mocking those who come later into the fold. Lately, I’ve been getting into the Kinks. Of course this is way past their prime time, or even production time. But they did exist before I was born, and certainly zenithed while I was young. My Point? Maple Stave is a good rocking, tight band, and wether you find them now or later in life all that matters is that you found them and that you were open to new things. I mean look at me, I’ve grown from being a self involved asshole with a zine to a self involved asshole who has a podcast. Growth. **Brad Bugos has no concept of growth, as a matter of fact he still thinks it has to do with his penis. Idiot. This review was written by him with no help from the outside world (he makes he say that everytime for some reason). Please check out Maple Stave and the coolest record label going Phratry Records, not only cause they are friends but because they rule. The end (he also makes me write that...
Jan
31

Crom Dobh – Heimweh – Music Review

Crom Dobh Heimweh Van Records cromdobh.bandcamp.com van-records.de This album starts off like a cut from a Soundgarden album, “Mind Riot” or “Searching with my good eye closed”. The guitar work in “Kings II” is phenomenal, its just a good overall song. It’s driving rock with sonic guitar licks and barely legible vocals. Throat graveling vocals. Drums are low in the mix. Usually with metal that is heavier, the drums are loud but these sound almost thin. “The invulnerable Tide” has a nice slow groove. Vocals prove to be a valuable tool on this song. Adds the right atmosphere. Kind of sullen creepiness. “Kings II” (And We Ride) would be a perfect song for a Nordic horse saga, and WE RIDE!! The guitar at the end of “Sedation” is so damn good. Sure the songs are long, something that will bug or dismay those who want their music in tight little bundles, but if you were attracted to brutal metal in the first place, and this band, that is not something you’re going to give three shits about. What matters most in those types of songs, and the bands that play them, in my opinion is that it moves. What you don’t want is for your conveyance to slow down, picking up crud and muck from the road. You signed on for a brutal, fast, out of control plunge into the darkness, not a joy ride through the woods. This is clipping, and you’re not even sure you can make out scenery as you go by. Yeah, “The invulnerable tide” is a standout track for me, it’s got such a great heavy groove to it. It doesn’t seem like six minutes and thirty seven seconds when you listen to it, and if you do listen to it with earbuds or headphones you get such a close immediate feel. It’s not such an easy thing to have heavy guitars pulling a song along at a nice pace, I’ve seen it over done too many times, so a big tip of the hat to crom dobh for putting it out front and letting it get there in fine measure. I also like how during the solo for “Sedition” the band jacks it up a bit, there’s a growl like someone fell out of the vehicle, but the band just keeps moving, ala bet a bit faster than before but still taking their time to get their. **Brad Bugos wrote this review. What...
Jan
29

Our Darkest Days – A Common Agony – Music Review

Our Darkest Days A Common Agony bird attack records Well played, sung and harmonized rock candy. I don’t think you will want to eat the whole thing in one sitting, lots of calories, but it sure the hell is fun and a lot more exciting than kale or avecado bean dip. “Dying Flames” would be the song I would pick out as the single, it showcases all the bands strength’s. Sped up metal drumming must be a bitch to play, something that would take a toll on your arms and hands during a tour. I think it would be something I would be questioning towards the end of the tour. Maybe years of practice cut down on the sore arms? You would be more sweat than man after a show.(see how the drummer from Our Darkest Days responded to this question in our interview) The songs are damn fast. That’s what I’m getting at, but they still maintain a catchiness w/good harmonies. It’s hard to believe that this is their first release together. Sure these guys have played in other bands, but this being their first full length together is amazing, so tight and well played. Such polished head butting melodic fury isn’t quite this easy on a first release. Ask Jim Paul Jim. Plus these guys are Canadian. **Check out our interview with the band on sltmonkees.com . Brad Bugos wrote this review, he’s been around way too long, is a bit bitter that things didn’t work out better and hasn’t eaten all day. Contact him at brad@fatrobotradio.com . Thank...

« Previous Entries

logo
Powered by WordPress | Designed by Elegant Themes