Archive for Black Sabbath

We Weren’t Prepared For The Genius Of Fuzz, Ty Segall’s “Proto-Metal Side Project”

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on October 6, 2013 by johnbuckley100

It tells you a fair amount about our expectations that, even after downloading the eponymous first rec by Fuzz, the metal band in which Ty Segall sings and plays drums, not guitar, it took us a few days to listen to it.  We figured that, like the acoustic Sleeper, released in July, this was at best a novelty, and more likely something like Jack White’s Dead Weathers — a slumming throwaway.

Whoo! Were we ever wrong!  Fuzz is the best metal album we’ve heard since Assemble Head in Sunburst Sound’s When Sweet Sleep Returned.  Forget the references invoking Black Sabbath — and yeah, there’re some tunes (“HazeMaze”) that seem like they’re dream marching in a Seconal torpor through LaBrea sludge — this is an album of fast’n’wild punk metal in which guitarist Charles Moothart plays Hendrix licks while Ty sings with all the gusto previously employed on his contemporary classic solo slabs.

We’ve always thought the weak link in the records Ty records by himself is the drumming — not that it’s weak so much as we can imagine how great it could be if he had Aynsley Dunbar or Bev Bevan or Will Rigby pounding the skins.  The drumming here is good enough, which is fine, because the singing, guitar playing, and Roland Cosio’s bass playing is quite literally awesome.  This may be the best sounding record Ty Segall has ever played on.

Look, we expected this was going to be something we’d indulge, perfectly willing to grant young Ty a gap-year project, given how hard he’d worked to graduate from whatever was the San Francisco school he’s now left, while we eagerly await the next step in his brilliant education, the locale of which has moved back to SoCal.  Wrongo!  Fuzz is among the greatest works yet from 2012’s Artist of This Or Any Year.  It is so much better than what Ty did last time he recorded with Moothart (The Ty Segall Band’s Slaughterhouse.)

This is Ty at his best, the music thrills, and we are blown away.

Black Mountain Goes Back To “In The Future”

Posted in Music with tags , , , , on February 3, 2008 by johnbuckley100

Trying to describe Black Mountain’s music is like copywriting for one of those Ben and Jerry’s ice cream mash ups.  In some ways, it’s easier to imagine what peanut butter cups mushed with cherry pie might taste like than it is to get a handle on a band that can sound like Sly and Family Stone jamming with Black Sabbath.  Okay, they’ve got big, slow, gooey riffs, and when Stephen McBean and Amber Webber get that call and response thing going, you do indeed think of Sly calling out and Ozzy responding. But that was then — on their superb 2005 eponymous debut.  “In the Future” is more like a mashup of Deep Purple with the Human Switchboard, and I mean that as a compliment.### This is a heavy album, Ummagumma meets PJ Harvey.  I miss the light, Tom Herman-esque guitar playing of the first album, and it seems a step farther in the direction of darkness than the rosy alpenglow of their Pink Mountaintops sister band/offshoot.  It’s been a while since I’ve cheerfully signed up to listen to prog rock, as this often is.  ###  But when it’s good — when the Blood Meridian rhythm section of Joshua Wells (drums) and Matthew Camirand (bass) crank up the bottom, and Amber Weber’s voice soars, as it does on “Queens Will Play,” and Stephen McBean leads the incantation — these guys tower over the coastal fjords of British Columbia, casting their shadow on the entire Vancouver scene.   ### I miss the pure fun of “Druganaut,” and “No Satisfaction,” and “Bicycle Man” from their earlier work.  But I can’t get “In The Future” out of the rotation on my iPod.  This is more nourishing than a bowl full of Phish Food. 

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