Staring At The Divine
Review by Tobias on May 30, 2002.
Relapse Records’ newly signed authority of moonshine metal, Alabama Thunderpussy has come to crack open our jaws with their whiskey-fueled chops. Tunes that flow seamlessly from heavy-ass rock to southern metal straight from the bottle are sure to have your head bouncing through the whole album if not spark a case of whiplash.
‘Ol’ Unfaithful’ opens the album with bare biceps and a shotgun to boot, just to let the listener know what’s in store. Riff after riff, “Staring at the Divine” delivers a high adrenaline blues based metal that will keep you entertained non-stop. The fantastic driving rhythms of tracks like ‘Motor-ready’ exemplify how this band is bringing back the dirty rocking edge to metal that often seemed lost to us through the nineties.
Johnny Throckmorton’s consistently strong, yet entertainingly dynamic vocals range from hard rock melodic bellows off tracks like ‘Hunting By Echo’ to a magnificent near-death yell found in songs such as ‘Shapeshifter’ and ‘Beck and Call’. Backed up by Erik Larson, these are voices of pure strength and power.
Even when the band drops into the slow eerie inebriated nightmare of ‘Twilight Arrival’ there is no denying the force that Alabama Thunderpussy emits, driven up by the dependably original and highly entertaining guitar work by Ryan Lake. Those strings are made into an amazing wall with the lock and key rhythm of drummer Bryan Cox and bassist John Peters.
The production of this album must have achieved exactly what the band had in mind; every time I hear that super-thick crunchy sound I want nothing more than to grab a case of beer, hop in a monster truck and have a field day at the nearest car dealership.
It’s rare that an album comes along that will have listeners playing air-guitar to every single track, but the long-hair swingin’, whiskey-swillin’, engine-roarin’, bad son of a bitch metal of “Staring at the Divine” will do it every time. Come get you some!
Bottom Line: The earth is quaking and this album is the cause of all the rumble.
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 9.4 out of 10