Well, if ain’t a big ol’ howdy coming to ya from Texas, where everything is bigger...and there’s a lot of fucking dust. Seriously, I have more random bouts of coughing and choking than a tuberculosis patient at an all night comedy club (don’t ask, I just write this shit. You people read
it). Anyway, in a strange turn of events, March has apparently produced two of the best albums I’ve heard in a while, and I’ve already graced you with one (if you haven’t read my review of The Living Infinite, please send me a message with your name and full address, and we’ll discuss this later). And because today’s album has no frills or excess, I’m going to shut the hell up, and give you what you came for...METAL!
Clutch - Earth Rocker
Alright, I’ll be the first to tell you that I have had an on again off again relationship with Clutch. It’s not that I don’t like them, but I’ll burn myself out on them. I will go through spurts where all I want to do is listen to Clutch. And seeing as how I have only really had the same two albums until recently, it was very easy to burn out. And then along comes this hulking beast of an album, Earth Rocker. I really think this album should be renamed to “Earth motherfuckin destroyer that stomps your face in and force feeds you your own teeth via cavities other than your mouth, and you enjoy it,” but I think that would take up too much space on the album sleeve. The album opens up with a hellacious roar via the title track, and though the tempo does alternate considerably and pleasantly, this is still an in your face record. The rocking is low down and dirty, the metal is fist-pumpingly wicked, yet throughout all of the tracks, this is clearly a Clutch album.
No matter how heavy this album gets, there is still a feel of a bunch of (extremely talented) musicians getting together and just jamming out to see what happens. The lone “spoken word” track, Gone Cold, breaks up the breakneck pace of the album, and delivers a solid, no-frills, blues experience. But before the listener can mellow out, too much, the throttle is ripped open again, and the album rushes headlong into a wall of fucking amazingness. This is an album for true rockers. Clutch have once again shown that not only can they walk the line between hard rock and extreme metal, but they can erase it whenever they damn well please. However, I need to take this time to admit that the last Clutch album I listened to was Robot Hive/Exodus, and I never really gave “From Beale St...” and “Strange Cousins...” all that much of a chance. That being said, Earth Rocker feels like it should be the logical successor to Robot Hive. If anything, this could be a twin album of Pure Rock Fury. No matter where you feels this record belongs, it more than certainly belongs in your ears, melting your eyeballs, shattering your brain bowl, and making you smile the whole time.