Patience, prudence & care (Brunt, «Blackbeard»)

bruntblackbeardIt took a while for having new music from – as someone put it – «everyone’s favorite Guernsey hailing instrumental stoner metal favorite Brunt». More than a couple of years, actually, which nowadays may seem a lot of time, but now it’s all right: a new ep, Blackbeard, is here, with three lovingly crafted tracks that – as we all put it – keep growing with every listening.

The raw material, taken from the stoner-psych department, is quite simple – riffs, sound, songs’ structure, dynamics, avionics –, so, what I find really compelling is the final result: a brilliant example of – as you may put it – the sum of it being something more than the single parts put together. I like many things: the gestures I can imagine behind the music, the power of the riffs at full throttle (Blackbeard), the pauses, the grooves and the solos (Son of Smoke), the not too hidden taste for drone (Cetus), the heaviness capability (Cetus again), the togetherness of the usual trinity, I like how one idea – one riff – leads to another: with patience, prudence and care.

Brunt, Blackbeard, self-released 2016.


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The gentle fuzz: Mother Engine, «Absturz»

AbsturzMy dear friend,

either it’s like watching the sun’s distant reflections over the sea, or like feeling the warming of a big rocket’s engine, the beginning of Absturz (= ‘crash’, ‘fall’), second album by German stoner kings Mother Engine offers a moment of pure recognition: I’m ready, take me wherever you like. The first guitar solo starts (Chris Trautenbach), the fuzz is under control, the ride begins. Then the sound thickens, as minutes are ticking, and the fuzz, and the cymbals’ fizz (Cornelius Grünert), and the powerful rumble (Christian Dressel) fully take the stage.

The stoner gear is there, all along the six tracks, all the musical cells, the short three-four-notes phrases ready to be repeated the right amount of times, showing their droning potential, wrapped  in the right amount of wah: nothing is particularly new, but everything is crafted with special attention, so that the ride is extremely satisfying (take, for instance, the enthralling build-ups).

And there is some kind of kindness at the bottom of Mother Engine’s vast and beautiful sound, and this could be new. The guitar might be wild, sometimes, and the drums and bass might be sitting upon a tank of unlimited fuel, but the trip is soft and sweet, full of wonders and friendly presences (included a couple of nice ‘transmissions’, in German), full of light and musical joy. Mother Engine are definitely part of a big family, but for me they easily stand in the front row, and Absturz is glorious hour spent in some distant place, a place where you’re not ashamed of smiling and lightly rocking your head.

Yours heavily, mp

Mother Engine, Absturz, self-released 2015.


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