Music Reviews

Grüvis Malt

…With the Spirit of a Traffic Jam


Weird, inventive fusion-rock that strives to unite the adventurous with the structured, the experimental with the classic. And so it ends up sounding a bit like Phish making out with Mr. Bungle. That is, it’s warm sounding and lazily tripping, but complex and brainy. It’s rather hard to grasp, but it’s still quite nice and pleasant to listen to. And so on.

The last track, “Stop and Go All Ye Faithful,” lasts for about a quarter and is everything Grüvis Malt should aim to be – dwelling, uncompromising, combining sparse electronica with a rich organic sound, producing what is easily the finest moment on the entire album. Unfortunately, though, much of what comes before that fine closing track is a bit too mediocre to garner much interest. That’s not to say it’s all of little or no interest, far from it – tracks like the funk-lightly “Malaise,” the beats-defying “Low Concept/High Maintenance,” and the outgoing space-rock of “Mobile” are all fairly impressive stand-out tracks on this disc. But elsewhere, their rock seem to be one without purpose, their jams tepid and uneventful – and so, what we get is technical brilliance with nowhere to run, or adventurous excursions that wind up being an afternoon trip of going in circles.

Some fine stuff, then, but more often than not it leaves quite a lot to be desired. Still, an interesting concept, and I, for one, am certainly curious about what they’ll come up with on their future releases. Here’s to the next one.

Lakeshore Records:

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