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Cocaine Moustache

On the Mirror

Review by Gary Hill

Had I heard this disc the year it came out, it would have made my list of best discs. Considering that it came out in 2011, I missed that one. Still, this disc is a great one that has a lot of Clutch built into. It’s a real powerhouse disc that always manages to entertain.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2012  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
The Drip

Percussion opens this. Then it moves out to something like nu-metal. Suddenly everything shifts as it turns to a real funky jam. The cut is suddenly something like Red Hot Chili Peppers meets Disturbed. It’s a killer tune that’s heavy, energetic and very quirky. The guitar solo is very meaty.

Out of My Hands
This screamer might not be as creative as the opener, but it’s a real powerhouse. It seems to combine Godsmack with Danzig and a more straightforward old school rock sound, like the hard rock of the 1970s. It’s a smoker that works really well.
Better Back In Time
Picture Clutch on steroids and you’ll have a good idea about the sound of this tune. It’s got some especially cool guitar work. A later section features a killer dual guitar solo section. It’s got one melodic guitar soloing while another plays screaming fast runs. This is a killer.
The Pledge
An acoustic blues sound opens this track. That motif serves as the force behind the first couple minutes of the track. Then it opens out to a melodic jam that’s almost progressive rock in nature. It’s still slow and bluesy, but there’s a real airy quality too it. As this continues to build it resembles Clutch mixed with a more jam band kind of sound. This is another killer on an album that’s full of them.
Cocaine Moustache

This opens with a chorus of voices with just percussion as the backdrop. From there it powers out into another smoking hot jam. It’s heavy and powerful and classic. Clutch is a valid reference again and these guys are really heavy, but yet maintain a great groove. Then it works out to a galloping faster paced section. While galloping often conjures Iron Maiden, this doesn’t come anywhere near resembling that. It’s almost like combining ZZ Top with Clutch. Then some other changes emerge as this just barrels forward. An early Black Sabbath groove is heard later, again combined with that ZZ Top vibe. It ends the same way it begins.

Garbage Bags and Shovels
Coming in heavy and powerful, this has a definite metal texture. It turns more towards that stoner metal sound after the introduction. This is the most freeform track on the set. It works through a number of changes and variants and never seems to really fall into any kind of real repeating format. The drums just pound away and in addition to the standard vocals we get some almost death metal styled vocals in a couple sections.
On the Mirror
There’s a cool groove to the opening riff here. Then it drops to a stripped down, fairly mellow jam that’s almost like a guitar oriented version of The Doors bluesier side merged with Clutch. One of the most intriguing tracks here, they take it into a jazz meets progressive rock section later. Then it fires out to some scorching funk sounds further down the road. This is an amazing track, but that could be said of pretty much everything here. The guitar solo purely screams. More proggy sounds are heard after that before it shifts to a reprise of the earlier verse movement. Then a powerhouse hardcore meets stoner metal jam emerges to take it to a quick outro.
Worst of Me
Hard rocking and a little nicely off-kilter this is another killer tune that presents a nearly completely different version of these guys’ sound. It works through some cool changes and has some classic moments.
Bleed My Last Breath
The rhythm section starts this one and it grows out pretty organically, combining a jam band vibe with the more typical stoner metal sounds. Around the four and a half minute mark it fires out to another scorching groove that’s very cool. One final change out takes the piece to its close.
 
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