Alien Father - Knives With Journalism
With their second release of 2008, Alien Father continue to explore the dark brooding corners. Their menace draws its bite both from inner city back alleys and backwoods dementia. But the band doesn't always play to that strength here. While some tunes like "I'm Innocent" throb with distorted, over-amped glory, and the controlled, subdued vocals add to the power. But too many soings, like "Gorilla Maps," or "Mike & The Bike," sound like 60s garage band filtered through a circus ride tune. Yet even here, there is something to like. "The Legend of Melvin" is goofy and there is the sludge-accordion mimicking the calliope, but here it works, mostly due to the distorted guitar.
The opening track, "Buckle Up," almost saves the record single handedly, a smoldering slab of distorted psych that is the Mascis/Neil Young sonic hybrid we've all be hoping for. The record does end strong, as both "Bastard" and "The Farmer" amble dirge-like toward heavy, swampy conclusions.
Alien Father like to play with madness, and silliness, which alternately makes "Knives With Journalism" creepy and, well, silly. The former definitely outweighs the latter, however, as the band continue their slow progress toward a psychic and sonic meltdown that I'm sure we will be allowed to observe.
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