steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Gamma Goat

"Beard of Sound, Beard of Sand" CD


Genre: experimental rock, noise rock

June 26 2008

From Public Eyesore sister label Eh? comes the depraved Gamma Goat, who might very well be rock stars in the mutant underworld living beneath the Earth's crust. Beard of Sound, Beard of Sand is a heavy slab of noisy experimental rock reminiscent of Bunny Brains and Old Time Relijun. In line with their influences, Gamma Goat's recording conditions are decidedly raw and lo-fi, lending the "songs" a gritty and ragged tone. The most successful tracks on this album are those that successfully establish an appealing groove and run with it. Caustic "Mighty Big Boots" is a fine example - a hellish bass and drums combo provides the momentum, perfectly framing the metallic guitar and biliously gruff vocals. The result has touches of death metal but falls more under lo-fi garage punk. Also lovely are the redneck blues of "Bowleater" and the Evergreen-calibre slack-groove of "Goats on Top," although the album's most moving moment could be "In the Desert," which pairs the band's trademark formula with a doomsday organ part. Importantly, some of the more abstract soundscape stuff - tape-manipulated "Killing Ducks With Nunchuks" (it sounds like what it's called!) and oversaturated "Barren," for starters - isn't as appealing as Beard of Sound's more accessible material. Regardless, much of this disc is very appealing - in a challenging, depraved sort of way.


youuuuuuuutube!: gamma goat live

Fun Fact: Although I at first took it for just another non-sequitur band name, a "Gama Goat" is actually a type of military vehicle.

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 11 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2008]