When there’s thrashing, crashing, effing and jeffing, why wouldn’t you want to listen? And, being frank, that’s what you can expect from this latest Melvins record, where riff-heavy tracks, thudding drums and one epic Beach Boys spoof track collide. Intrigued yet? Thought you would be.
As bad as it is to admit, given the band formed in 1983, I actually only personally discovered Melvins last year. It was during my revisiting of Foo Fighters’ ‘Sonic Highways’ documentary, when they unearthed the local rock history of Washington D.C. This sort of dissident, angsty punk is my vibe — and increasingly so — which meant it was only right to: a) dig into their back catalogue, and b) get excited about this newest release, ‘Working With God’.
Now, while the title suggests they had a hand in the recording studio from the almighty himself, there’s bound to be more to that name choice. In fact and more intriguingly, a lot of male names feature on the track listing — we’ve got Rick, Brian and Mike all in there for good measure. And, of the lot, ‘Boy Mike’ is probably my favourite. It’s particularly raucous, so it’s perhaps the in-for-a-penny, in-for-a-pound nature of this beasty tune that I enjoy the most.
Among the other standouts, in my book, ‘Hot Fish’ is a scuzzy piece that’s clearly been fun to furnish with effects pedal output. It’s one of the grungier offerings, with ‘Hund’ and ‘Caddy Daddy’ coming in just behind.
The weirdest element of the album? It’s got to be the 11-second screaming occurring on ‘Fuck You’. The most playful song? Easily ‘I Fuck Around’, the nod to the Beach Boys — rather surprisingly — that I alluded to previously. Didn’t see it coming at all.
It’s got some scatterbrained pieces to this Melvins jigsaw, but I’ve got time for it — and so have my speakers.
If you only download one track, let it be: ‘Boy Mike’