Monday, June 26, 2017
the Melvins : " a Walk with Love & Death"
If Mike Patton gives these guys a huge thumbs up it's hard to argue, though he is also a fan of a special needs choir, so tastes in music might be subject to change. In the here and now is what we are going to focus because despite their legacy the reality is you are only as good as your last album. For the purpose of this review I am splitting this double album up as the first part "Death" is a rock album and the second part "Love" is a film score which I have lower expectations for. They deliver on the opening track it has the creeping groove and Buzz actually trying to sing is what I want from this band. They continue on a more melodic path with more guitar heroics thrown at almost a classic rock level with "Soberdellic" "Euthanasia" has a more doom like feel and is the first really heavy song. The first song that really goes sideways with the album's momentum in a more garage way is " What's Wrong With You" which doesn't really connect with me as solidly as the other songs thus far. There is a really tight Ted Nugent "Strangle Hold like groove on "Edgar the Elephant". The backing vocals are very Beatles, so they are back on track with what has worked so far on this album.
They are back on more of a classic rock tip for "Flaming Creature" with squealing guitars coming out of the corners. You can here how their influence extends even into bands like Queens of the Stoneage. There is a darker undercoating to this song, despite it's stoner rock fuzz. They relax into a bong laden groove that reminds me more of Clutch on "Christ Hammer" . I like the effects on Buzz's vocals. The chorus is more freedom rock than you would expect from them. The guitar work pretty much compensates for this . "Cactus Party" continues the more Kiss like party boogie and away from the more sludge like past. This is just straight rock n roll. "Cardboa Negro" returns to the brand of tension that I expect from these guys at this juncture in time. Thus concludes the first half of this review. I'll give this album a 9 as there is only one song that doesn't really work for me.
So when it comes to reviewing the film score part of this album. Well it's really a waste of time. I sat listening for an actual song to appear and there was only one burst of garage rock that was nothing to write home about . So it is pretty negligible , just a bunch of noise and atmosphere. Melvins fans will not be missing out on anything if they skip the score altogether, as I know I am going to pretend it doesn't exist.