Low down good

This Canadian duo has been making waves for some time. I just came across this set, which is either their second or third album (I'd elaborate, but I don't quite understand the higher math involved, either). Not that I care about such things; I'm all about the music.

The Blue Stones
Black Holes
Loud. Catchy. Often mean. Always aggressive. Even when these songs slink (and it is ever a serious slink, baby), they do so with knife in hand. The roots are in the blues, but the Blue Stones owe as much to Black Sabbath as they do Buddy Guy (or, perhaps more accurately, the Black Crowes).

Indeed, it's that vague stoner rock feel (draped over throbbing garage riffage) that really hooks me. Most garage-esque bands keep the sound as clean as possible. Even the White Stripes never got this hairy.

It's not just the distortion; it's the reverb. The Blue Stones know the difference, and these boys use both to full effect. The songs are constructed to create full blister, and there is very little wasted movement. These are fully-formed songs ready to inflict maximum damage.

Some bands create intricate patterns that require some reflection. The Blue Stones are not one of those. These songs erupt with immediate passion and don't let up. If this one doesn't grab you, you just might be a zombie.

Jon Worley

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