Dispatches from the Highlands
King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard PetroDragonic Apocalypse; or, Dawn of Eternal Night: An Annihilation of Planet Earth and the Beginning of Merciless Damnation Well, it's that time again. Aer catching the last two of their three recent concerts in Chicago, I feel obligated to shout out the new King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, because hot damn did those shows not disappoint and neither does their new album. e Gizz crowd contains an increasing number of Dead and Phish heads since I last saw them back in 2019, and the Aussies have acknowledged becoming more aware of those jam legends and their fans latching on to
Album Notes from Erickson “The Soundtrack to your Chill”
Portugal. e Man Chris Black Changed My Life It's been a wild ride for Portugal. e Man since they hit it global with "Feel it Still." Writing about Woodstock six years
ago, I called it "their most unabashedly pop album yet. Perhaps this sound will expose them to the larger audience they undoubtedly deserve." No one, and least of all PTM leader, John Gourley could have imagined the level of success the Alaska/Oregon band was about to stumble upon. Yet, I found the collective strength of the songs on Woodstock paling in comparison to every record since Church Mouth , their second release. Back then they were churning out a new LP every year until the shockingly long 23-month break before 2013's Evil Friends . And at the time, I thought that album represented a noticeable shi from the four prior. Now a half decade removed and in a world in which everyone knows at least one of their tunes, the ninth LP Chris Black Changed My Life muddies the waters of the group's real demarcation and serves as the bullseye in a Venn diagram of the previous three. It's a touch of everything but not enough of any one to completely stick the landing: the melodic sweetness that seems to come so naturally to Gourley; the hip-hop under- tones that Danger Mouse prompted while producing Evil Friends ; and the sampling that helped boost the band to new heights on Woodstock . Chris Black likely won't change listeners' lives the way he did Gourley's, but it's most certainly a welcome entry into our existence.
the Gizzverse as they themselves continue to take an increasingly exploratory route during their shows. But little of that is present on the pith- ily titled PetroDra- gonic Apocalypse;
or, Dawn of Eternal Night: An Annihilation of Planet Earth and the Beginning of Merciless Damnation . Stylistically most similar to the thrash on Infest the Rats' Nest, their latest incorporates the proggier sides explored on Polygondwanaland to create a more diverse re- sult. And it's awesome. But the last three min- utes of PetroDragonic's closing "Flamethrow- er" sound as if Stu and co. have made the next step from Phish to Disco Biscuits. e band is promising yet another new album before the end of the year, one led by synthesizers, which means the delicious end to "Flamethrower" will likely segue into whatever track kicks o LP number 25. Sign me up right now. Listening Now: e Arcs' Electrophonic Chronic . It's another Dan Auerbach project, lied by the "supergroup" surrounding him, each with soul revival-leaning backgrounds.
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