BurningTapes, aka Darren Page, has something a little different for your brains and ears this time around with his all new long player. He’s all but shelved the Carpenter-esque horror vibes and is ready to trample our psyches with dirty bass and scuzzy beats. There’s also a peppering of keys and samples that give the proceedings the feeling of early 90s Beastie Boys mainlining MF Doom and Queens of the Stone Age, with a healthy dose of Odelay-era Dust Brothers production for good measure.
After releasing two excellent horror score-inspired albums(one of which was an actual horror score for the fantastic film Black Lake) Page felt burnt out and needed a change. He found that change in 70s exploitation films, Beastie Boys, Black Moth Super Rainbow, and bass guitar drenched in layers of fuzz. The result of that newfound love of everything fuzzy and scuzzy is Devil x Nine, a rock ’em sock ’em shot of hip-hop-inspired rock ‘n roll straight from a rusty patch cable right into your cerebral cortex. Nine tracks of adrenaline-fueled fuzz rock sure to get your engine purring.
“Atom Punk” is a total desert rock mind melter. It’s like Queens of the Stone Age and Chemical Brothers huffing motorcycle fumes and getting lost in Check Your Head. “A-TYPE Noise” is a slinky electro track, more street groove than desert rock freakout. Possibly one of the best song titles I’ve heard in a long time, “Everybody Gets Hit In The Mouth Sometime” is all attitude. “Sabotage”-inspired bass line that also brings to mind Beck’s “Devil’s Haircut”. If you don’t get a little extra strut in your step listening to this you might just be dead. Or just really, really lame.
Devil x Nine rolls right on by in quick succession, like a 1970 Barracuda buzzing thru Death Valley running at 110 mph. “Shotgun Shack” is the musical equivalent of a Roger Corman drive-in B-movie mixed with an 80s Troma release. Lean and mean and ready to rip your face off like a radioactive biker with a switchblade. “Sonatine” slows things down a bit. It’s a peaceful sunset overlooking recently quieted chaos. “We Still Kill The Old Way” opens on an organ riff that could’ve been pulled from an Animals b-side. That drum ‘n bass kicks us into early 90s vibes.
Things are warming up outside. Time to hit the highway, roll down the windows, and see where the pavement takes you. Devil x Nine is the perfect soundtrack for getting lost in some miles. Or fighting mutant biker gangs in the southern California desert.
7. 8 out of 10
‘Devil x Nine’ will be out on 3/26 via Burning Witches Records. Buy it here.