Meat Puppets: Lollipop (Megaforce)

 |   |  1 min read

Meat Puppets: Damn Thing
Meat Puppets: Lollipop (Megaforce)

The very great Meat Puppets out of Arizona delivered exciting, desert-baked psychedelic rock with an edge of country and hard rock in the Eighties. If the collected lyrics of Curt Kirkwood would stump even the most dedicated thesis writer with an interest in surrealism, it hardly mattered.

The guitars would sear off into the wide open spaces driven by a tight rhythm section of brother Cris on bass and (for a long time) drummer Derrick Bostrom.

In recent years they have pulled in their wonderful excesses although retaining that country-grunge drone approach and on this, their umpteenth (13th?) studio album, fans of their eariler attack might feel a little disappointed by the opening bracket where constraint seems to be the over-riding consideration.

Hour of the Idiot further in however packs an exciting punch -- North African-sounding drone, churning guitars and a paint-stripping solo -- which is all over in three and a half minutes. There is as good later on the thumping, Sabbath-conscious Way That It Are.

But the chief feature of this outing is that the Kirkwoods (now with drummer Shandon Sahm, son of Doug, back) have decided economy and the country-grunge elements should be more to the fore in songs which are often disarmingly melodic.

The opener Incomplete works minor chords and some pure Sixties pop changes to delightful effect (unless you were expecting a psychedelic explosion in a guitar factory) and throughout are memorable songs coloured by skewed guitar shapes as of old, just more restrained and pointed. The grunty guitar on Orange sounds like a bulldozer revving up -- but there are also songs here (Lantern, Town) which roam closer to country-rock.

Nothing here crosses the five minute mark - most fewer than four -- and everywhere Meat Puppets gently remind you why they were one of the essential bands of the Eighties and early Nineties, even if too few recognised it at the time as the world looked to Seattle.

Like the sound of this? Then check out this.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Mark De Cive-Lowe: CHURCH (ropeadope)

Mark De Cive-Lowe: CHURCH (ropeadope)

When I interviewed expat keyboard player/producer and remixer Mark De Clive-Lowe during his recent 36-hour visit to Auckland he was aware – after 10 years in London and five in LA where he... > Read more

Charlie Rich: Too Many Teardrops; The Complete Groove and RCA Recordings (Ace/Border)

Charlie Rich: Too Many Teardrops; The Complete Groove and RCA Recordings (Ace/Border)

In a famous interview in San Francisco in December '65, Bob Dylan was earnestly asked about his favourite poets. He was in a playful mood and mentioned his genuine favourites Rimbaud his pal... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Eric Dolphy: Out to Lunch (1964)

Eric Dolphy: Out to Lunch (1964)

The sudden and unexpected death of saxophonist/flute player and clarinettist Eric Dolphy just months after these exceptional studio sessions for the Blue Note label robbed jazz of one of its most... > Read more

THE LENNON LEGEND BOOK, REVIEWED (2003): More or less Lennon

THE LENNON LEGEND BOOK, REVIEWED (2003): More or less Lennon

Had John Lennon lived, he would have turned 63 last month. It's interesting to speculate what kind of music he might be making today. Interesting, but pointless: Lennon never saw the trickle-down... > Read more