Monday 5 June 2023



We think people may be able to tell by reading through the various reviews posted on Desert Psychlist that music leaning towards the heavier end of the rock spectrum is something we care about deeply but we also hope that our love of music that is a little quirky and sits a little left of centre is something that has not gone unnoticed either. Heavy music is of course Desert Psychlist's bread and butter but you cannot live on bread alone and so we vary our musical diet by listening to a diverse array of different  music, someone passing by Stonerking Towers is as likely to hear the lilting British folk of Fairport Convention, the staccato chords of  Steel Pulse or the modal jazz of John Coltrane blaring from the towers uppermost windows as they are the crunching fuzz of Kyuss or the reverberating riffs of YOB or Sleep, it 's how we roll. One of The Psychlist's greatest pleasures is finding a band who manage to cram all of our musical needs into one  package, its a rare occurrence but one that Montana outfit The Gray Goo, Max Gargasz (guitar/ vox/ synthesizer); Matt Carper (bass/ vox/ keyboards) and Zach Ronish (drums/ vox/ percussion), have managed to pull off twice, first with their debut "1943" and now again with their latest release "Circus Nightmare"

When Desert Psychlist reviewed The Gray Goo's debut "1943" we described the bands mix of the straightforward with the unconventional as Zappa-esque and "Circus Nightmare" is an album very much in that same vein. The Gray Goo's music on "Circus Nightmare", like Zappa's, does not follow straight lines or rules, there is a air of organised chaos and manic playfulness to songs like "Alligator Bundee", "BEP", "Wizards of the Mountain" and "Out of Sight (Out of Mind)" that on a first listen may invoke a "what the fuck" reaction but will, with subsequent listens, soon turn to admiration and respect. Every style and genre of music ever committed to tape (and even some that have not) can be found on "Circus Nightmare", reggae, funk, doom, stoner/hard rock, jazz, musical theatre and folk all raise their heads here, sometimes separately and sometimes all together in one song, these different styles generally topped of with a mix of vocals that range from sneered and punky all the way through to harsh and guttural. Lyrically things are just as schizophrenic, even Zappa might have raised an eyebrow at lyrics like  "and there was a producer named Ron Zachary, he recorded and mixed Bundy‘s EP, snare sounded like shit Bundy was pissed so he went into the booth and chomped off his DICK" ("Alligator Bundee") or "holy shit this shits the shit, I'm The Wizard and I'm ripped" ("Pipe Hitter"). Musically these guys are totally on the ball, to be able to play so many different styles and then be able to seamlessly weave those styles in and around each other over a whole album calls for a special kind of musician and these guys can play the shit out of anything they set their minds to... and on this album regularly do so.

There will be some for whom "Circus Nightmare" will be a bridge too far, who will find The Gray Goo's music too disjointed, too angular and too far off the beaten path, but there will also be those that find the bands unconventional grooves refreshing, exciting and courageous. Hopefully the majority of listeners will fall into the latter category rather than the former and revel in the levels of daring diversity and musical multiplicity The Gray Goo bring to our tables with their gloriously garish grooves..
Check 'em out ...... 
© 2023 Frazer Jones

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