Saturday, August 25, 2007
Clockcleaner - Babylon Rules
The cover is evidence enough. Look at that nice, glossy photograph! These bros have risen up from the muck 'n murk of their early days and have joined major label yacht rock conglomerate Load Records as an official "up and coming young American rock 'n roll combo." Even though the bassist is like, 31 fucking years old! Dan and I saw them live at Permanent Records and we were in front and she kept grinding up against our throbbing, swollen members as she played her six string bass like the butt lovin' boner slave that she so aspires to be.
But enough about Clockcleaner, the world's oldest band. This is their new album! Like I said, they're movin' on up from the depths of the noise-rock underground. First full-length was on Reptilian Records (RELEASER OF ALBUMS BY DWARVES AND HEROINE SHEIKS, FUCK YEAH) and had a really crudely drawn cover of some stuff or something, fuck. And it sounded like a raging inferno of teenage mutant ninja feces inside Mother Nature's industrial vagina. Really poopy like. And it was great. Luckily, on the band's follow-up In Utero, they finally acknowledge that "teenage angst has paid off well/now I'm bored and old" because they're such fucking elderly pieces of fucking shit. That's right, fuck 'em. They're not any good at all. In Your Honour was the best thing they ever did, and even that's merely the greatest album ever recorded. Better than Bleed American, even.
Okay, just kidding. Nothing is better than Bleed American. Not even this album, which once again finds Clockcleaner at their top of their game as America's best loved buzz band. Remember when you first heard "Gentle Swastika" on the OC and it made you the die-hard super destiny Clockcleaner devotee that you are today? That's fucking right, it did. You most likely won't be disappointed with this new full-length LP, then! The songs still completely pound a bitch, the riffs are still repetitive and abrasive, and John Sharkey is still playing guitar with a quarter so that he can make his trademark "REEEEERRREEHHHHEEEEEHRHHREERRRREEEEEEEE" noise. BUT SOME THINGS ARE DIFFERENT.
For one thing, the last album didn't have Karen. Karen is a woman who plays the bass guitar. She's on this album, and the bass, while often distorted, sounds a lot clearer and punchier and it rules. So do the drums, for that matter! They sound fabulous on here! Who the fuck recorded this? Bob Weston's doing the next one, right? Not this one? I think so. But anyways, man, this fuckin' thing just sounds crystal friggin' clear! The Hassler was just kind of cold and distant, and Nevermind was really just like this brilliant shit storm of wonderfulness, but this thing is just like a big candy colored sperm load of well-produced heavy. Really pleasing to listen to! A lot of really brutal albums just don't sound that way, you know? This album does, though. So do albums such as the Melvins' Hostile Ambient Takeover and Kevin Drumm's Sheer Hellish Miasma. Abrasive shit that's actually pleasant to have running through your ears. Kudos, albums.
One super ultra MAJOR difference here, though. For some reason, John Sharkey has recently deciding to stop screaming everything like some pissed off crazy guy. Maybe his voice was disappearing too fast? I don't know. I'll ask him some day. So he's actually sort of "singing" now, and in a much lower, more throaty register than his screams on older Clockcleaner records. And it sounds okay most of the time! I mean, his BRUTALLY ROARIN' vox provided many of the highpoints of Nevermind and really added a lot to the band's poop flingingly abrasive manner of music-making. His new style sounds a little bit less scary. When I first heard "Vomiting Mirrors" earlier this year, I was like, "Aw, shit! This doesn't sound dangerous! It just sounds like some novelty crap! He's singing about little doggies on the railroad tracks in a dumb voice, what the hell!" But it's not so bad, really. Good songs on here! They played "Caliente Queen" when I saw them live, and I remember that song because it had a bouncy feel-good sex beat. "Daddy Issues" is pretty much the "N.S.A." of this album, a fast, brief (compared to the rest of the album's six minute epics) punker before they close it out with more SIKK BROOTALITY. Crank out the brews for this one! And "When My Ship Comes In" just fucking KILLS IT. Ah, man, the things I would do to this song if I only had a cock. Made of songs. Or something.
Rating: They're still good! Go Clockcleaner, go! Keep releasing an album a year, OF the year (ha, well, maybe... it's definitely a major highlight of 2007, at least)! Also, Let's Stay Friends is still amazing. I listened to it twice today. Fuck yeah. Hell, fuck YES. And that's the review! The end.
Song: "Caliente Queen"