Tuesday 28 November 2023

KLEAZER ~ SIGNALS ... review

Kleazer, Berthil de Lange (bass); Steven van Olphen (drums/backing vocals); Matthijs Oldenhuis (guitar) and Harald de Ruiter (vocals/guitar), hail from Amsterdam in The Netherlands and jam a form of rock that sonically sits somewhere between what Josh Homme was doing when he was with Kyuss and what he is now doing with his current band QOTSA, a mix of straight down the line swaggering fuzz'n'roll and sleazy off centred and jagged alt-rock. The band have just release a new EP "Signals", a long awaited follow up to their two song release "Beautiful Violence" (2010), and we think its well worth a listen.

Title song "Signals" opens things up, a nice'n'sleazy slice of stoner/desert fuzziness with choppy guitar refrains crunching out over a stuttering rhythmic groove which is then decorated in clean strong vocals that regularly climb to falsetto and give the song an almost post-punk feel in places, the perfect driving song. Next track "Cracks" finds Kleazer still very much jamming a desert groove but this time shifting the dynamics between strident heaviness and off kilter stoner funkiness, the vocals here are slightly harder edged than on the title track but are nevertheless still deliciously melodic and clean. "Void" follows and here we find Kleazer adding elements of doom, sludge and heavy psych to their musical armoury while still retaining that QOTSA- like quirkiness that has become very much a part of their signature sound while next track "Hide" boasts a groove and vocal that back in the day might have seen the band gracing MTV, a three minute pop-punk romp. Penultimate track "Ambition" sees a touch of grunginess seeping into Kleazer's vocal attack which is especially evident on the call and response sections of the songs chorus , the clincher here though is the effect laden guitar solo that proceeds the songs final drive to the finishing line, finger blurringly old school and all the better for it. Closing number "Another Year" stays in that grunge/alt-metal pocket but adds into its mix touches of heavy psych, post-metal and the blues, it is not quite the barnstormer you might have been expecting to close the album but it is nonetheless still a great song.

If you are planning on a long drive you could not ask for a better soundtrack to accompany you than Kleazer's "Signals", its grooves are upbeat enough to keep you awake when those white lines are lulling you into slumber. its lyrics will make you smile as much as they will make you reflect and its melodies will lodge in your brain never ever to leave, its highway heaven.
Check it out ... 

© 2023 Frazer Jones

No comments:

Post a Comment