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((Thorlock)) - "((Thorlock))" (CD)

((Thorlock)) - "((Thorlock))" CD cover image

"((Thorlock))" track listing:

1. Assneck
2. Deuce
3. Man Will Lose
4. Triceratops
5. Mississippi Wheelwash
6. Extinct
7. Rockin' In The Free World
8. Beyond Cosmic Dimensions

Reviewed by on April 2, 2012

"Playing a cannabis-fueled, southern-fried stoner metal, ((Thorlock)) keeps things buzzing through the early tunes on its self-titled album, but the high starts to wear off about halfway through."

Playing a cannabis-fueled, southern-fried stoner metal, ((Thorlock)) keeps things buzzing through the early tunes on its self-titled album, but the high starts to wear off about halfway through. There's definitely a nice 1970s vibe going on (covering Kiss and Neil Young doesn't hurt on that score), but having a couple epic-length tracks that feature way too much noise and fuzz really creates some lulls.

On the positive side, there are tracks like the groove-laden "Assneck," which has a Mastodon-meets-Thin Lizzy feel to it, along with some excellent drumming and guitar work. Following that up with a no-frills cover of Kiss' "Deuce" only serves to emphasize the '70s vibe.

"Man Will Lose" takes us in a slightly speedier direction, with some excellent drum fills and the album's best solo. Unfortunately, after that, things head downhill.

Clocking in at more than 18 minutes, "Mississippi Wheelwash" will tax most listeners' patience with its sludgy, feedback-filled intro, which goes on for nearly three minutes. Granted, there is a mighty riff right after that, but the song maintains its mid-tempo slog throughout, with large sections full of cacophonous feedback and noise.

"Extinct" restores some of the momentum, but, unlike "Deuce," the band's take on Neil Young's "Rockin' In The Free World" is a bit less than inspired, with the addition of some profanities to the proceedings feeling a tad juvenile.

Then, for the final track, the band goes all Hawkwind on us, for the 18-plus minutes of "Beyond Cosmic Dimensions." Granted, the fuzzy bass line that opens the track is pretty cool, but the spaced-out guitar work in the middle stretches onward — and what starts out with a cosmic feel ends up with a comic one, going on for far, far too long. I will say, though, that at least the tempo changes up.

If you're a fan of sludgy '70s-inspired stoner rock, ((Thorlock))'s self-titled effort will definitely have at least a couple tracks you'll want to crank up in your Camaro. Still, even the proudest Led Zeppelin t-shirt wearer will probably have a hard time getting through the disc's two 18-minute, feedback-filled monoliths.

Highs: "Assneck," "Deuce" and "Extinct."

Lows: "Mississippi Wheelwash" and the Neil Young cover, "Rockin' In The Free World."

Bottom line: A healthy dose of '70s influence unfortunately also includes a predisposition toward excessively long, meandering tracks.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)