JUSTIN’S METAL REVIEWS W/C 12/5/08
BRANT BJORK / PUNK ROCK GUILT
This is the latest album from former Kyuss / Fu Manchu drummer Brant Bjork and if you haven’ come across him before you are in for a treat, especially if you like either of the aforementioned bands or Stoner rock.
Brant’s style is easy, laid back Stoner with plenty of deliberate guitar licks that match the style of music and when you listen to the opening track “Lion 1“ you get a very good of what to expect, this is music to listen to on a hot barmy summer night as the sun slowly sets with something tall and cool in a glass. The are some more up tempo tracks like “Shocked By The Static” and the title track but even theses have that sort of laid back, melodic bluesy feeling to them that sound so cool coming out of the radio and that’s what Brant Bjork is all about.
If you haven’t come across Brant’s work before this is a good place to start and shows what he does very well, listen out for; “This Place (Just Ain’t Our Place), “Plant Your Seed”, “Born To Rock” and the bonus track “Just The Same” and the 10 minutes plus “Locked And Loaded”, listen out for more Brant Bjork on my HFM show.
TOTAL PLAYING TIME = 9 TRACKS + 52 mins
WARREL DANE / PRAISES FOR THE WAR MACHINE
This is a sol album for the Nevermore vocalist and you may ask yourself why a solo album, well this allows him explore music outside the format of the band and he uses this freedom to good use.
One of the things I like about Warrel, (apart form his unique vocal style), is the imagery that he uses in his lyrics, I find them emotive, compelling and thought provoking, take these lines from the song “Brother” for instance, “If I could play god, do you know what I’d do? I’d swim through your blood and kill the caner in you, my brother” and that’s just one example. The music is heavy but has a lighter shade to it as well and there are more dynamics on here than in Nevermore as “Let You Down” and “Your Chosen Misery” aptly demonstrates, the second starts off slowly with a beautiful haunting melody and acoustic guitars and builds into a metal monster, I get the feeling that several of these songs are semi autobiographical.
I have to admit that solo albums are mostly too indulgent but Warrel manages to avoid this pitfall and still mangos to stretch his musical wings without compromising the Metal content. Also listen out for; ”Lucretia My Reflection”, the superb “Patterns” and the metallic force that is “When The Rats Went T War”, if you like Nevermore you will love this excellent album.
TOTAL PLAYING TIME = 45 mins + 10 TRACKS