Category Archives: 2009

Review: Mighty High – Drops a Deuce

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Label: self-released Released: October 12, 2009 True to the form they set with last year’s full-length, In Drug City, Mighty High’s new EP is nothing if not unabashedly fun. This 7″ EP features two songs that waste nothing (except perhaps brain cells). “Cable TV Eye” is full-on stoner paranoia propelled by riffs they learned from hard rock leaning punk bands… Read more »

Review: Elin Palmer – Postcards

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Label: Suburban Home Released: October 23, 2009 When I think of an album that tells a story, I tend to think of concept albums where the story often takes precedence over the music, resulting in weak, but often needed filler. Elin Palmer’s Postcard has a very narrative nature to it, but in a far different way than a concept album… Read more »

Review: Chad Smith’s Bombastic Meatbats – Meet the Meatbats

Label: Warrior Records Released: September 15, 2009 Fans of Chad Smith’s other endeavors, the funk/punk of Red Hot Chili Peppers and the generic hard rock of Chickenfoot, will find his Bombastic Meatbats project to be a surprise to say the least. It owes more to 70s fusion artists John McLaughlin and Herbie Hancock and jazz-oriented prog than it does to… Read more »

DVD: Blue Cheer Rocks Europe

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Label: Rainman Records Released: June 26, 2009 There’s a handful of bands out there whose influence has been felt far and wide decades after they made their mark, yet they never enjoyed significant commercial success. The Velvet Underground comes to mind. So does Nick Drake. There are others, but in heavy rock circles, one of these bands rises above all… Read more »

DVD: Jethro Tull – Live at Madison Square Garden 1978

Label: Virgin/EMI Released: October 20, 2009 Jethro Tull live in 1978? Haven’t we already heard that? The ill-timed Bursting Out was from European dates of the same tour and that immediately begs the question, of all the live Tull recordings sitting in the vaults, why release yet another form the Heavy Horses tour? Depending on your feelings about progressive rock,… Read more »

Review: Balance and Composure – Only Boundaries

Label: No Sleep Records Released: August 11, 2009 I love when a record is really busy, but doesn’t get lost in the busyness. On the four song Only Boundaries, Balance and Composure fully live up to their name, balancing intricacies with listenable sensibility and remaining composed while the music swirls. “I Can’t Do This Alone” combines a tribal rhythm with… Read more »

Review: Victor! Fix The Sun – Person Place or Thing

Label: Friction Records Released: October 20, 2009 Albums that rely heavily on noisy dissonance and angular rhythms as a means of expression seldom even dabble in accessibility, but Person Place or Thing, the latest from Michigan’s mathy post-punkers Victor! Fix the Sun, is clear evidence of what’s missing from that narrow view. From the ringing guitar and wild, frantic drumming… Read more »

Review: Admiral Browning – Magic Elixir

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Label: Dancing Sasquatch Records Released: April 2009 So much stoner and doom rock tends to be an exercise in heaviness alone. While that certainly has its place, few people can take the steady bludgeoning that it offers even as it fills that need in all who really love heavy metal for the mind-numbing weight of slow, trudging riffs that take… Read more »

Review: Grant Hart – Hot Wax

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Label: Released: October 6, 2009 The progression of an artist from a seminal band to a solo career usually tells us more about the artist now that they’re freed from the shackles of band unity (in whatever form it existed). What’s interesting about Grant Hart’s Hot Wax is that it tells us some things about him, but more of where… Read more »

Review: The Family Curse – White Medicine

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Label: Fainting Room Collective Released: October 2009 There’s no doubt that the Family Curse really like noise in general and the Butthole Surfers in particular. The opening track certainly makes no bones about it, but also shows that they don’t quite get it. It’s random and pointless and they miss that even the wild abandon of the Buttholes and the… Read more »