The Melvins: Freak Puke - Album Review - Our Vinyl
the melvins freak puke

The Melvins’ LP ‘Freak Puke’

Album Reviews

the melvins freak pukeThe latest release, “Freak Puke” from long time experimental noise rockers The Melvins is another chapter in the strange and unusual that has become the norm for a band that is anything but normal. For over 29 years the band has released over 20 albums and has had their own influence on many bands, across many genres of music.

This time around mixing things up, and calling themselves Melvins Lite.  The current lineup features, Buzz Osborne (aka King Buzz) on vocals and guitar, Dale Cover on bass and Trevor Dunn on the drums.

According to Buzz, “The Melvins have a long history of mixing up our line-ups and I think that’s what has kept us relevant for so long.  Consider the “Freak Puke” record the fifth side of the four sided Melvins’ triangle.”

The Melvins Lite sound on this album is the always, while not the normal players of the Melvins, still has the unique blend of musicianship and experimental noise based music that many people tend to not appreciate.  The intricacy that goes into making various noises into a musical medley is a talent that tends to go unappreciated, but seeing as the band has been releasing music for over 25 years is a testament to the fact that someone out there gets it.

A few tracks that stand out are “Baby, Won’t You Weird Me Out”, which starts off with an almost screechy violin arrangement before giving way to a solid guitar riff that catches the attention.  King Buzz’s distorted vocals and the eclectic guitar and bass round out the track and make it something that even those who can’t appreciate the weird can wrap their brain around and take in.  And you can’t go wrong with one hell of a drum solo at the end courtesy of Dunn.

The Melvins’ Baby, Won’t You Weird Me Out

But it goes without saying; don’t expect every song on the album to speak to you on some sort of level.  If you’re a diehard Melvins fan, you may be let down by the more straightforward pace and songwriting of some of the tracks.  And if it’s your first time listening to a Melvins album, then the lineup that is Melvins Lite, should be a good starting point before delving into the bands back catalog.

The title track, “Freak Puke” has the good old fashioned punk rock guitar vibe and growling vocals that are reminiscent of a punk band meets AC/DC type cover band.  It’s a solid track with a great vibe that still stays true to the Melvins core sound.

The Melvins’ Freak Puke

the melvins freak pukeThe “Freak Puke” album as a whole is a strange and unusual trip, a pared down version of the band, this time with only one drummer.  This mellows down the normal over the top sound of the band, which is a good thing, a different thing, and yet doesn’t quiet down a band that has been known as the “loudest band on Earth”.  Plus, in no other place can you find probably one of the weirdest covers of a Paul McCartney/Wings song ever.  Yes, on this album the Melvins Lite give their rendition of “Let Me Roll It”.

Reviewing a Melvins album is no easy task, particularly when the bands press release reminds of such.   Like reminding the reviewer that Oscar Wilde said, “A cynic is a man who knows the price of everything but the value of nothing.” And of course a great quote from Buzz stating, “I believe Lou Reed said it best when he asked “what sort of person WANTS to be a critic?” Which makes sense when you remember that critics had described HIS music as sounding like, “the tubular groaning of a galactic refrigerator.”

But whatever your take on the band or the album, make no mistake the Melvins will be VERY busy in 2012.  The Melvins Lite release “Freak Puke” is available on June 5th, a five song EP of new recordings called “The Bulls and the Bees.” (This recording is sponsored by Scion) will be released as will a tour only split 7 inch with the Unsane.  The first of thirteen “Sugar Daddy Live” 12 inch split singles with a wide variety of amazing bands.

And MORE surprises including over 100 live shows…

You can keep up with the Melvins at

www.themelvins.net
www.facebook.com/melvinsarmy
www.ipecac.com
www.facebook.com/ipecac

In the meantime, click over and enjoy the track Leon vs. The Revolution from Melvins Lite.

Written by Christina Lawler

OurVinyl | Contributor