San Diego Symphony's second night of the Masterworks season showcased the power of place and personality
Garrett Harris noon, Oct. 13
1) It Burns
2) Vanilla Gorilla
3) Hour of Power with Rutger Hauer
4) Do Your Worst
5) The Malody
"It Burns" starts with a heavy, rolling, guitar-and-bass riff that carries a hint of funk. The lyrics come fast, and I can't pick out much except "it burns." It is bent and sweaty music that is too hard for radio play. The guitar and bass work is sophisticated and reminiscent of Metallica with a dash of Primus.
"Vanilla Gorilla" comes even speedier with high vocals that sound like a cross between English and gibberish. The only words I can pick out are "vanilla gorilla," and that's only because I'm listening for them. This track has solid drumwork that isn't obscured even by the shouting singer and lightning pace. The guitar sounds a little muddled in places, but it might be recording buzz and interference.
"Hour of Power with Rutger Hauer" is the finest-named and slowest of all the songs. It's a little darker and heavier, with Zeppelin or prog rock lyrics about "Dreams of yesterday / Those dreams have gone away / to tomorrow."
"Do Your Worst" starts out with high-treble vocals and guitar that could replace your current car alarm, it then rolls to a lower range and back up to the car-alarm tones. It is funky with a little bit of Red Hot Chili Peppers. "The Malody" is more of the same, but with driving guitar and long, howling vocals.
The Long and Short of It is too heavy for radio, and I don't see them breaking out of the local arena because of that. But if I were to line up an all-star San Diego night of hard rock, it would be these guys with the Archons.
Inside the CD liner is a picture of kitty cats, which I think is hilarious.
--- Hometown CD Review 3-30-06