Thursday, May 19, 2011
Lost Classics - Clutch 'Blast Tyrant'
Ye true music fans, you few in number and beautiful in spirit minority that appreciate music for what it is, you know it and love it like art should be known and loved, to you wonderful folks I ask you this; how many records in your possession can you honestly say are solid gold (metaphorically) from start to finish? Records that are as damn near perfection as can be without becoming imperfect because of it (Raymond Deane knows what I mean by that!) and just leave you happier by listening to it? If you are indeed one of the honest few to whom I wish to appeal, you'll admit that such records are few and far between. However, in this review I wish to bring one such record into the glorious light of appreciation, the pride of 2004, Clutch's 'Blast Tyrant'.
Drummers take note; riffcentric white guy rock in 4/4 timing can be as groovy as those photos of your dad in 1977 looking like Hyde from 'That 70's Show'! Drummer Jean-Paul Gaster excels himself in the sheer funkiness of his playing on this record, like nothing else I've heard from the band since. It is the perfect compliment to guitarist Tim Sult's seemingly endless collection of riffs and tasty Wah soaked lead breaks, all making their way ferociously to the listener's ear by way of hot P-90 pick-ups and fiery Orange Amps!
One interesting thing about this record compared to most bands and indeed some other Clutch records is thing: most bands in the studio will tend to accentuate their strengths and bury their weaknesses in the final mix. Blast Tyrant does no such thing, everything is load and proud! Guitars, Bass, Drums, Organ, Vocals and Lyrics are way out in front at all times. What do I mean when I say 'vocals and lyrics'? Well many singers may like the sound of their voice but not their lyrical content, or vice versa, but super-cryptic lyric master Mr. Neil Fallon always seems to make a point of singing as coherently as someone with such a weighty voice can. (If you haven't felt the weight for yourself, see Mastodon's 'Blood and Thunder', the “Split your lungs in blood and thunder, when you see the white whale!” breakdown from 2004's 'Leviathan'). Indeed some of the tongue-in-cheek highlights of the album are from Fallon's strange sense of humour, including the title of this article:
“Please allow me to adjust my pants,
So that I may dance the good time dance,
And put the onlookers and innocent bystanders into a trance.”
Such is the opening of track 3, 'Mob Goes Wild', the least hackneyed anti-Bush song ever to come out of the term of his presidency. Neither System of a Down nor Green Day never saw the beautiful simplicity that Clutch advocated:
“Everybody move to Canada and smoke lots of pot.
Everybody move to Canada right now. Here's how we do it:
Bum rush the border guard before he and his dog ever knew it.”
I will say no more in way of the details of this record. Get it, Play it Sufficiently loud, and Fuckin' ENJOY!!!
By Edward Gerard Brophy, 2011