Pontiak: Sun On Sun

By: Dennis Cook

Pontiak draw heavily from the Three S's (Sonic Youth, Sabbath and The Sonics) and then blacksmith those hard tools into something altogether seductive and full of genuine otherness. This feels outside normal bounds, but one is taken there on willing feet, anxious to see where these possibly dangerous boys from Virginia's Blue Ridge region want to take us. Tactile opener "Shell Skull" rolls on pretty familiar heavy wheels but dumps us in the brief instrumental tone poem "Swell," which in turn lobs us incongruously (yet oddly perfectly) into "White Hands," a shifting cannon blast that softens into a metallic ballad lurch. Comprised of brothers Van (guitar, lead vocals), Lain (drums, vocals) and Jennings Carney (bass, organ, vocals), Pontiak can stir one with a drone n' clang number (that morphs into a fine Spirit style long hair rocker) like "White Mice" or work over a low heat until your ass is charred on "Sun On Sun." There's also something of Duane Eddy to Van's guitar work and even hints of Creedence's darker "Run Through The Jungle" creepiness. One may be taken aback at the end when they discover Pontiak covered all this ground in under 35 minutes. If TK Webb & The Visions have been flipping your skirt up this year then here's a new friend to throw in the multidisc changer. This is rock that kneads you like warm dough in a half light afternoon, summer kitchen, leaving one pressed and worked and ready for baking.

Pontiak is currently on tour. Find their dates here

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[Published on: 12/1/08]

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