released June 1st, 2010
from the album - Evil New War God
from all music
The Melvins were the first post-punk band to revel in the slow, sludgy sounds of Black Sabbath. Their music is oppressively slow and heavy, only without any of the silly mystical lyrics or the indulgent guitar solos — it's just one massive, oozing pile of dark slime. The Melvins' first record was released in 1987; they've released many albums since then, but it wasn't until 1993 that they went to a major label, thanks to their protégé, Kurt Cobain. While some may find the Melvins to be dull and repetitious, their place in rock history is interesting, even if considered to be just a footnote.
The band formed in Aberdeen, WA, the same town that produced Nirvana's Cobain and Krist Novoselic. For Nirvana and many other Seattle-area bands, the Melvins' sludge was inspirational; the younger bands took the Sabbath-styled heaviness of the Melvins, while adding an equally important pop song structure, which the group tended to lack. While all of their disciples became famous after Nirvana broke big in 1991 (including Mudhoney, who featured former Melvins bassist Matt Lukin), the Melvins only expanded their cult slightly. They did earn a major-label contract with Atlantic, but after releasing three records for the label, they were dropped in late 1996 and the group returned to indie status, landing with Amphetamine Reptile for 1998's Alive at the F*cker Club. The late '90s/early 21st century saw a flurry of releases by the band: The Maggot, The Bootlicker, The Crybaby, Electroretard, The Colossus of Destiny, Hostile Ambient Takeover, Pigs of the Roman Empire, Houdini Live 2005: A Live History of Gluttony and Lust, all of which (except for the fourth one) were issued on Mike Patton's Ipecac label.
In addition to their Melvins activities, singer/guitarist Buzz Osborne joined Patton (and former Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo and Mr. Bungle bassist Trevor Dunn) for the experimental outfit Fantômas, resulting in a number of releases (1999's self-titled debut, 2001's The Director's Cut, 2002's Millennium Monsterwork by "the Fantômas Melvins Big Band" [recorded live in San Francisco on New Year's Eve 2000 but not released until two years later], 2004's Delirium Cordia, and 2005's Suspended Animation), while the Melvins' latest bassist, Kevin Rutmanis, joined Patton in another side project, Tomahawk. In 2006, Big Business bassist Jared Warren and drummer Coady Willis joined the Melvins, appearing on that year's Senile Animal album. The follow-ups, Nude with Boots and The Bride Screamed Murder, were recorded by the same lineup and released by Ipecac in 2008 and 2010.
At this point in the Melvins career, they can do pretty much whatever. Even if this means starting an album with a call-and-response track in the style of Adam Ant, complete with military cadence vocals and an extended drum solo. At the same time, withstanding some strange experimentation -- including a steamy a cappella version of the Canadian folksong “Peggy Gordon” and a sludged-out, seven-and-a-half-minute cover of the Who’s “My Generation” -- The Bride Screamed Murder is surprisingly accessible. Their 20th (or so) studio album ranks right alongside Senile Animal and Nude with Boots, the two prior full-lengths completed with Big Business’s Jared Warren and Coady Willis. "Inhumanity and Death," "Evil New War God," and "I’ll Finish You Off" feature some seriously meaty grooves, with dual drumming and drop-D powerhouse chunk alongside classic metal yells and moonlit howling. When things start going off the deep end in the group’s ventures into abstract realms, brightly sung vocal melodies smash through and accentuate the gloomy comic book noir with splashes of fiery red. Sure, the Melvins are brutish, but they’re having a lot of fun.
1 The Water Glass Melvins 4:16
2 Evil New War God Melvins 4:48
3 Pig House Melvins 5:29
4 I'll Finish You Off Melvins 4:57
5 Electric Flower Melvins 3:27
6 Hospital Up Melvins 5:38
7 Inhumanity and Death Melvins 3:03
8 My Generation Townshend 7:39
9 Pg X 3 Melvins 6:19