Wednesday, November 6, 2013

RED FANG: WHALES, LEECHES, TOTAL, FEST.

Red Fang close Total Fest XII
I do a radio show once every couple of weeks on KBGA. It's called Josh's Ultramega Ultrablast, if you're interested. I alternate Thrusdays at 4PM (MST) with Bryan Ramirez's Unheard Music. In my capacity as a dude mostly playing loud music, I've done some time as an assistant (volunteer) music director. I got so damned excited by the new Lord Dying record that I had to add it, and when I did, I figured I'd ask if I could also preview the new Red Fang album. I'd played a bunch of it from Youtube and really liked the tones, the songs and pretty much everything about it.

Rob "Zombie" Lawlor, from Zombie Tools.
Previewing records mostly means picking what songs you think are the standouts (Doen, No Hope, Crows In Swine, Dawn Rising for me) and making sure the thing's FCC compliant. In that quest for lyrics, I came across this review, which is almost not worth drawing attention to. Some prick on Pitchfork gives this record a 5/10 review. Pretty much and F grade.

Now, the Red Fang fellers don't need any boosters, and I'm sure at the end of the day this Grayson guy's a fine individual who pays taxes and votes and soforth. And I'm positive Red Fang have got plenty of fan love to buoy any shittalkers, but I truly am baffled by anyone who doesn't think the formula they've got together works really, really well for Whales and Leeches.

This album is packed with what you already liked about Red Fang, is superbly recorded (I thought a little better dialed than Murder the Mountains) and brings in Mike Scheidt from Yob for a track. It's loaded with excellent variations on the Red Fang formula, which I think is a unique and solid approach to a genre plum full of over-seriousness, plodding odes to Norse gods, pot, cars and little else. That they have some fun with it and at the end of the day, are a band that fucking rips, seems ultimately to be lost on this guy. And a few others out there. Currin's review has essentially filled five paragraphs with not much at all besides a bunch of Pitchforky mumbo jumbo in what appears to largely serve as a platform for him to display his vocabulary ("hitherto," "elan," etc. pepper this thing). I'm fine with intellectualism and a two-dollar word once in a while, but I can't pin down what exactly this record is missing at the end of reading this thing.

We say follow your heart and gut, and turn it up. Red Fang played to 400 sweaty people in a room that had to have been 120 degrees with the heat index factored in, and absolutely slayed. The crowd would've started flipping cars if they'd been asked to.





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