Big Rock Candy Mountain: Hey Kid

By: Dennis Cook

Just the first minute of opener "Rocketship" reveals a band with a drill bit intensity and creative moxie akin to At The Drive-In, Jane's Addiction and Nirvana, with a similar mixture of complexity and beautifully ragged elements. By turns celestial and intensely earthy, Big Rock Candy Mountain is a modern band with seemingly equal enthusiasm for classic rock and angular, post-Pavement flavors, with each tune on this saucy debut slapping these currents together with smashing results. Full of interesting switchbacks and dramatic dips, BRCM also credibly screams, "Give me all your goddamn money!" At points, like the jagged strut of "Lover," they have a British tinge - straight trouser smart rock deluxe – but they quickly muddle any simple portrait, squirting fired up power chords and Queen-esque vocal nuances all over, yet never in a way that seems messy or random. The voices chirping in their heads may be manic but they harness the buzz into a truly compelling song cycle. Capable of the giant amp stack, prog-metal chunkiness of "I Am The Storm," the gnarled delicacy and harmonic sophistication of "Fire Song" and the thug force hymn "Bang Bang," there seems vast oceans for Big Rock Candy Mountain to explore, but based upon this opening salvo it's going to be interesting wherever we land.

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[Published on: 9/22/09]

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