WHERE: Mamé Records
There’s something cool about getting back in touch with old friends. Last week I shindigged with a friend of mine and we conversed many topics over a couple and another couple and another couple of beers and it was great to experience the good times again. YUCK returned to my life recently with the release of their new album Stranger Things, and it once again brings me back to the good times. These guys burst onto the scene back in 2011 with a debut that displayed a lot of confidence and willingness to celebrate the sound of old school grunge, and it was awesome. The following five years saw releases that were a tad hit and miss, but it’s nice to say that Stranger Things brings YUCK back to form today.
Hold Me Closer kicks off the record with a super fuzzy guitar riff that pairs up with an equally distorted vocal which immediately brings me back to 2011. YUCK throw a sweet lead melody into the pit of fuzz and it all sounds very good. The track switches things up with a simple but enjoyable display of guitar ballsiness before returning back to the same instrumental and yeah, pretty solid way to get started.
It proves to be a nice introduction into YUCK’s sounds as following track Cannonball crushes all first impressions aside with a high octane performance that’s complete with crashing drums and hugely distorted guitar riffs to show off the band’s more urgent side of their sound. Good song. This then makes way for Like A Moth, which offers up a much softer side of YUCK with a mid-paced melody and higher emphasis on harmony replacing the immediate spotlight on the guitars. It’s a nice song, but is a little strange to follow on from a track that gets you all riled up and ready to punch something.
Two sides collide for the track Stranger Things to form a sound that’s bolstered with some strong drums but complimented nicely with a slightly cleaner guitar tone that deliver some riffs and melodies that altogether sound pretty dreamy and psychedelic. This collision continues throughout the rest of the album as tracks such as I’m OK, As I Walk Away and Swirling all take a lovely handheld journey together, with a little shaky turbulence made by an encounter with Hearts In Motion.
Stranger Things is a solid album from YUCK. It offers up a slightly more matured and fleshed out sound for the grunge act which does head down some frantic paths but sticks mostly to one that’s relatively safe. A little steadiness is good but it does end to make some of the material blend into one big musical blur, but for the most part this is a good record.
What did you think of Stranger Things? Do you agree with the review? Let me know in the comments below!