Blips | Under The Radar Acts - Bass Drum Of Death And Cool Ghouls

In our never-ending quest to dig up great bands whose tickets cost less than a corned beef sandwich at your local deli, we bring you our latest round of Blips here on JamBase. The idea behind Blips is to form a lasting relationship with acts we believe to have bright futures and stick with them as they develop and grow. We view Blips as a progression that begins with a mention in a Blips segment, then leads to a Blips Update, and ultimately culminates in a feature length interview. In this edition, we have some really cool new music, so take a sec, poke around the bands’ various websites and see what you think of these two under-the-radar acts…

Bass Drum Of Death

Website | Facebook

You’d think that someone who spent many hours listening to music from bands with names like String Cheese Incident, Jiggle The Handle and Hypnotic Clambake that I wouldn’t have any preconceived notions about what a band sounds like solely based on their name. Yet I had my rock-critic snobbery guard up before I had even heard one note of music from Bass Drum Of Death, assuming that they were some kind of proto-metal band. In reality the two-piece band from Oxford, MS lay down a fuzzed brand of lo-fi garage-rock that is as murky and muddy as the mighty Mississippi River.

Back in June, Bass Drum Of Death released their self-titled sophomore effort via Innovative Leisure. The eleven-track affair is dripping in acid-drenched surf-rock guitar (think The Ventures) mixed with lead singer John Barrett’s scuzzy reverb-soaked vocals and drummer Colin Sneed laying down some heavy punk-influenced drums. If you’ve been digging the sounds of Ty Segall and his litany of side-projects, than Bass Drum Of Death will be your next favorite band.

Cool Ghouls

[Photo by Deejay Scribbles]

Website | Facebook

Not that this history lesson is remotely necessary, but back in the 1960's San Francisco was ground-zero for the psychedelic rock movement. Now, some 50+ years later, the Bay Area is once again finding itself populated by a scene of like-minded bands that have a foot firmly planted in the raw, garage-rock psychedelia of the days when the Grateful Dead was still known as The Warlocks and when Grace Slick was still in the Great Society. Amongst that crop, which includes the likes of Shannon & The Clams and Thee Oh Sees, is a relatively new band that has popped up on our radar – Cool Ghouls.

Like the aforementioned bands, the four-piece has a decidedly retro sound that features cheery sunshine-soaked harmonies, jangly surf-inspired guitar along with healthy dose of acid-drenched fuzz. Back in late-April, the Cool Ghouls released their self-titled debut via San Francisco label Empty Cellar. The ten-track effort is rooted in the raw garage rock sounds that are reminiscent of any number of tracks from Lenny Kaye’s original 1972 Nuggets compilation album.

Written By: Jeffrey Greenblatt

[Published on: 10/17/13]

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