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Monthly Archives: September 2012

I’m always pleased to get submissions, but it’s a little obnoxious when I get sent stuff that has no relation at all to the typical style covered on here – the biggest howler by far was “[BAND NAME REDACTED]*  draws upon an eclectic palate of musical styles dishing out a healthy dose of rock, pop and funk/rap. [REDACTED] sounds like King Crimson and Weezer adopting Elton John, renaming him Prince, and celebrating with a sunbeam of absinthe.”

Fortunately, there’s plenty of submissions like Brooklyn’s SLEEPIES – who actually understand what we cover here, and they understand how to crank it up and get weird (and wild. and world?). Anyway, this LP plies a blown-out, fuzz-laden 90’s style alt/noise rock that triangulates between DINOSAUR JR. and SONIC YOUTH’s more accessible moments. Fortunately, there’s plenty of submissions like Brooklyn’s SLEEPIES – who actually understand what we cover here, and they understand how to crank it up and get weird (and wild. and world?). Anyway, this LP plies a blown-out, fuzz-laden 90’s style alt/noise rock that triangulates between DINOSAUR JR. and SONIC YOUTH’s more accessible moments.

The Sleepies generally don’t take prisoners, as on opener “Cool Boy’s” buzzy stomp (which is somehow still catchy). This is when they’re at their best; some tracks dial down the intensity in favor of atmosphere, or something like that. Fortunately, there’s enough high-energy moments, like “Got A Way” and “Setback” which make up for the couple misfires that either go on too long “Waste Water”, or don’t go much of anywhere (“Weird Wild World”). Too many bands are content to wallow in the mire, or strip all the interesting jags from their sound in favor of pop sheen. Fortunately, Sleepies can handle both.

*It’s redacted both to protect the band from the repercussions of embarassing copy like this, and to protect you, my dear reader, from whatever the fuck that hideous combination of genres and artists actually sounds like. 

LISTEN: Soundcloud

BUY: 16oh

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NOTE: Posting has been sporadic. I’m well aware – I do my level best to get around to stuff, but school and work make it touch-and-go sometimes. Thanks to all those who still send me stuff. It will get reviewed, I promise.

ANYWAY! We got sent this from a publicity guy. This time, the ‘sounds like’ area is marginally closer to the truth. Vulture Kult practice a pretty big sounding brand of RAWK. They bill themselves as a two-piece band, but they’ve got a surprisingly expansive sound. There’s a variety of takes on the same style with this record – though some go for a swinging SABBATH groove, and some for a straighter, faster pace, they always hew pretty closely to a 70’s hard rock sound. No complaints over that, for sure. These guys are good musicians, and it comes through without coming across as wanky or show-offy. Guitar work is good, but you won’t find too much in the way of fretboard-burning solos – the guy definitely prefers the lower end of the neck, but he works it, for sure. Blues-rock riffs for days on this thing. There’s hints of BLUE CHEER, I’d say…but a punk influence as well, mostly manifesting in a faster pace, and shorter songtimes.

It’s a tried-and-true formula, and it delivers for Vulture Kult – mostly. Some songs like “Avenue H” come up empty, if only because doing a trick we’ve heard before is only gonna float if the riffs and power are there, and this one just hasn’t got them. Come to think of it, the most accurate thing I can say about this album is that to any listener who’s already heard the musical touchstones, it’s gonna sink or swim in your estimation based on how much you like the riffs – that’s the centerpiece here. “Cyanide Hand Grenades” deliver…”Welcome to the Land of the Dead” and “Movie of Me” are welcome changes of pace, but like some of the other tracks on the album, they can over stay their welcome a bit. They take an interesting turn in the last couple songs, dipping into psychy reverb-laden space drift, but if these were scattered throughout the album, I’d probably be more intrigued…it feels like a strange coda in the current track listing.

With bands like this that focus on the humungo riffs, they either punch you in the nose and are gone, or they have to have enough tricks to keep the intensity up. Vulture Kult does this with equal proportion of hits to misses – I’ll file this under “probably a killer live show.”

LISTEN: Bandcamp

BUY: Vulture Kult

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