Ty Segal + Freedom Band- Deforming Lobes (2019)

Posted by KB on 7/18/2019 to Reviews In Brief
The anti-live live album. Recorded live in LA, Segall and his Freedom Band played brand new songs to a mostly quiet audience. Neat idea to catch the rawness and energy of new songs with minimal cleaning up. Segall, this generation's Robert Pollard in his prolificacy, churns out another batch of rockers that are part bat-shit crazy and part art metal with a full, open wall of noise. Honestly, I am not a fan of all his work but to me his recent releases - Freedom Goblin and Ty Segall- he's gotten more intriguing, engrossing and accessible by maintaining his super-charged solos and lessening, but not eliminating, his quick intra-song veers. If you like loud and unexpected then try this one on.

Favorite Songs: Squealer, Breakfast Eggs, The Crawler

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Ty Segal + Freedom Band- Deforming Lobes

The Resonars- No Exit (2019)

Posted by KB on 7/17/2019 to Reviews In Brief
No it's not 1964. It's not the British Invasion but this sounds a hell of a lot like it. Name the British bands that landed in the early 60's and you can hear virtually every one of them- most notably the Who, Dave Clark 5 and Hollies (more currently Len Price 3). Jangly upbeat guitars, rat-a-tat drum fills, vocal harmonies and simple, but not stupid, lyrics. Only difference is that they employ engineering that is better than then and the guitar solos more explosive and technical-and really, really good. Best part of "No Exit" is that is doesn't feel dated. It doesn't try too hard either. The Resonars sound natural and airy in their 60's reset like they were there when it happened and are proprietors of this sound.

Favorite Songs: Gone Is the Road, Who's Gonna Believe You Now?, Before You're Gone, Attention Here, Beagle Theory

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The Resonars- No Exit

Cash Box Kings- Hail To the Kings! (2019)

Posted by KB on 7/16/2019 to Reviews In Brief
Sometimes you just need something fun to pop on during a warm sunny summer day. That's "Hail To the Kings!". Old school 50's styled Chicago blues that's tight, and grooving with loping, walking rhythms and soulful harmonica. These guys can play and they make it so sound so easy. This is not your down in the dumps blues so it's not aching and personal, it's fun- as noted above- and unassuming. There are a few cuts that could be pared from the middle that slow HTTK's momentum, but it ends on a high note and overall is just a good time. Cash Box Kings have been bopping away for over 17 years and here's to the next 17.

Favorite Songs: Ain't No Fun, Take Anything I Can, The Wrong Number

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Cash Box Kings- Hail To the Kings!

Dreamers- Launch Fly Land (2019)

Posted by KB on 7/15/2019 to Reviews In Brief
Dreamers play top-40ish pop-rock. They straddle that too poppy line where it can be a little saccharine, but when they drift into Kooks or Quiet Company territory it works. There is no new ground being broken but the songs are well constructed with solid bridge hooks and are varied enough to keep the album interesting. They deftly use all the current tricks to make their songs probably good live, especially for the festival circuit, and the young ladies. Will this find its place on the best of lists at the end of the year? Doubtful. Though I could see this as a summer guilty pleasure.

Favorite Songs: Dizzy, Die Happy, Vampire In the Sun, Someway Somehow

Launch Fly Land




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Dommengang- No Keys (2019)

Posted by KB on 7/11/2019 to Reviews In Brief
Dommengang has a 70's-let's-wail hard rock feel but with fresh interpretations. In between their guitar flaying metal riffing one could parse out of the complex, expressive soloing dabs of shoe-gaze (Blues Rot and the vocal delivery),Ted Nugent (Sunny Day Flooding, Stir the Sea), Ritchie Blackmore (Wild Wash), Tony Iommi (the apex of most solos), Jerry Garcia (Arcularius- Burke) and even some Eric Clapton (no joke listen to Kudzu). I even hear a bit of their contemporaries Black Mountain in the song structure. The drums are embellished precision flailing around steady bass lines adding to the interest. Lyrically, who knows what they are getting at but with such stellar musicianship, who cares. One imagines that any of these cuts could be seriously expanded live. Long live rock!

Favorite Songs: Wild Wash, Stir the Sea, Jerusalem Cricket, Sunny Day Flooding

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Dommengang- No Keys

Black Mountain- Destroyer (2019)

Posted by KB on 7/2/2019 to Reviews In Brief
"Destroyer" could arguably be Black Mountain's best release to date. It's a fine mix of crunch, riff, stoner, phsyche and 70's art rock. Unlike in their past, there are less self indulgences. They still create songs that are constructed of unique parts, but there are no 18 minute dronings. They blend keyboard and synth accents and big back beats with full blown epic guitar. For Black Mountain, this is a concise, to the point rock album and one with no weak links. Lyrically they are open to interpretation with dashes of free love and man's impending doom with probably more doom than love. "Destroyer" is capable of satisfying the need to hear Genesis, Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Cure and Bowie in one sitting (FD'72 the latter two).

Favorite Songs: Future Shade, Boogie Lover, High Rise, Pretty Little Lazies

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Black Mountain- Destroyer
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