Friday 24 May 2024


And just like using the fast travel option found in Ubisoft's Assassins Creed video game franchise Desert Psychlist find ourselves back in Spain, this time to wax lyrical on the virtues of Grey Giant's second release "Conversus In Lutum". Grey Giant, Mario Hospital "Pitu" (bass & vocals); Javi Echeverría (guitar); Hugo Echeverría (guitar) and Pablo Salmón (drums), first appeared on our radar with their excellent debut "Turn To Stone" a stunning blend of heady psych and swaggering heaviness decorated with vocals that had a unique wearied quality. The album garnered much praise from those who know a thing or two about these things and saw us at the Psychlist describing the band’s sound as being “slightly naïve and raw in places" but justifying that statement by saying that it was this naivety and rawness that added to its appeal. If, like us, you found much to admire about the band’s debut then new album "Conversus In Lutum" is going to have you going weak at the knees with delight.

A thrumming low key riff and liquid lead guitar, accompanied by low slung bass and rock steady drumming, introduce opening track "Mud & Sorrow" the songs deliciously seductive lysergic groove is routinely interrupted by moments of caustic heaviness and is augmented by a breathy vocal that although not particularly strong is, given the stoned to the max nature of the band’s sound, both fitting and effective. Next song "Ostrich Head" is an anthem for the oblivious, the song’s lyrics, sang in  distinctive wearied tones, bemoaning us "waiting for the latest update" while all around us the world turns to shit, these observation set against a backdrop of some of the best loud/quiet/loud heavy psych you are likely to hear this side of Christmas, a mix of riffs, licks, motifs and solos supported by an ever shifting, sometimes tight sometimes loose, rhythmic groove. Grey Giant celebrate the art of audience participation with their next song "I'm A Mosher", those who have survived a mosh pit will know that the best pits do not start with an explosion of noise, they are gradually built up to and Grey Giant do that here by ramping up the anticipation of that explosion layer by layer until there is nothing else for the music to do other than to erupt. Final track "Bright Eyes" is not, like the Art Garfunkel song with the same name, an ode to rabbits it is instead a dank sinister opus that is doomic in both its musical dynamics and its lyrical content, a song that is Sabbath-esque in places and Doors-ish in others, the song serving as a blending of all the musical elements that have coloured this album up to this point and an indication of where this band might take their music next.

The blending of heavy riffs and heady heavy psych that can be found on Grey Giant's "Conversus Lutum" is not a new phenomenon, there are a million and one other bands releasing albums every other day who are utilizing those very same dynamics. So what is it that makes Grey Giant and this album so different,you may ask, well maybe it’s those wearied/stoned out vocals, maybe it’s the albums mix of caustic and calm guitar textures or maybe it’s just those undulating loose/tight grooves that are at the albums root. Whatever it is, one or the other or a combination of all three, there is no getting away from the fact that once heard this is an album that you will not want forget. 
Check it out …. 

© 2024 Frazer Jones

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