2 MORRO MORRO LAND
BIZARRO ZARRO LAND
NO REST FOR THE OBSESSED
*ETCHING BY BRIAN CHIPPENDALE*
OH, THE TROUBLES! I swore I would never let a record in my collection be reviewed without listening to it, even if I've heard it a thousand times before. Well, this one came up and I had a bit of a dilemma. I also have a rule (in place previous to this blog) to not play records that I own that have high value. Well, lo and behold, this one came up and I had already placed it VERY firmly in that category. It's the blue copy instead of the black one and that's a record
Anyhow, I decided to listen to this album digitally (as it does come with a digital download, so it seemed fair), even though I have heard it so many times.
The album starts off as their earlier albums always did - with a spark that ignites a long, pounding record. The file image for every LB song/ record is probably something like this:
This album is no exception. Their typical noisy rock is in full force after a short riff by Brian Gibson, after the marathon drumming of Brian Chippendale joins in. The first few songs play out in the usual pushing energy, before Riffwraith hints at the interactions that go on between the Brians. The anxiety-inducing Magic Mountain is a constant buildup that doesn't plateau until right near the end, always leaving my nerves frayed. A few more driving songs occur before the album tapers off into filler territory. This seems to be their pattern - front load the best songs and put what feels like 'jam sessions' at the end.
The one thing I can say with assurance about Lightning Bolt is that it's their live performance that really makes them. The albums best serve as a reminder of the show, a way to say 'remember how crazy this song was live?' I've had numerous friends hear the records and say 'I don't get it', which makes sense to me. The longer I go since seeing them, the less of an emotional pull the records have on me.
In their live show, every amp is all the way up and the drumming looks like a blur as he has a constant drum-roll going intermingled with straight fast-rock beats. Due to fans pushing over/running into their equipment, they've broken from their old style of live show. They would set up their equipment in unconventional locations, shunning the venues PA system in favour of their own pieced together amps (in front of the stage, the middle of a gymnasium away from the stage & the alley behind the venue are a few places I've experienced their show.) However, they now use the stage and house PA, allowing the crowd to push and shove without possibly damaging their gear. I understand why they do that, but to me it takes away a bit of what made you feel like a part of the whole thing. Crowds would be watching the previous band and right when they finished BANG, this mysterious band that was setting up their gear in the corner would start playing seconds after.
Anyone who remembers my band, Two Bears, can probably determine that we took a good deal of inspiration from this band. However, as things tend to happen, we ended up sounding quite a bit different once we wrote songs and toned down the 'play as loud as possible' angle. As usually happens, this album made me want to play again and/or see these guys play again.