Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Gozu - The Fury Of A Patient Man (album review)

Cover artwork by Alexander von Wieding
Carnac the Magnificent says: "The Godfather Part II, The Empire Strikes Back and 'The Fury of a Patient Man' ..."

The question:  Name three sequels that are superior to the original.

On this, their second full-length album, Gozu put on a clinic of fuel-injected, pavement chewing rock n' roll.  Mixing the chest pounding guitar chuggery of heavy metal with the melodic swagger and laryngeal gymnastics of rock n roll, Gozu has enough in their bag of tricks to get the blood pumping through the meekest of men and to soothe the most savage of beasts.

Satisfying riff after satisfying riff and a gallery of pounding and driving rhythms make up the entirety of this disc.  Don't get the impression that every song on the album all sounds the same, it's simply balls to the wall straight through.  All the right elements of hard rock and metal are emphasized without any one particular facet dominating above all others.  Powerful vocals, burly guitars and hammering rhythms characterize each track in full and equal measure.

However, if there has to be one aspect of 'The Fury of a Patient Man' that stands slightly above the others and does the most to distinguish the project it's the sticky vocal melodies and impressive overall performance of Marc Gaffney.  But that's not quite fair either because there's such a balance here as all members fire on all cylinders from front to back.

'The Fury of a Patient Man' is an all-around tougher affair than the first album 'Locust Season', heavier and harder in many ways while still retaining the rounded edges of 'Locust Season' provided by the  melodic and often Motown-y soulful vocals.  The more metallic approach the band employs is apparent throughout but comes to the fore three tracks in.  "Charles Bronson Pinchot" is a near High on Fire riff-tastic face-melter that shows the band exploring different intersong textures.  It's followed-up by the soulful crooning of "Irish Dart Fight".  These are expansive oceans of territory for the band to navigate through and they do it in a natural and organic way, all within an individualistic framework.  If 'Locust Season' captured a new band walking through the door searching for an identity, then this album sees the band return kicking down the door and strutting through, full of surety and fire.

The album closes on "The Ceaseless Thunder Of Surf", an extended instrumental jam which tips the scales at over 23 minutes.  Yup, this album's got a little bit of everything that's good about rock music and a lot of everything that's great about it.

Where the band's first full-length, 'Locust Season', favored a slightly blues tinged classic rock sound akin to labelmates Sun Gods in Exile or Five Horse Johnson, 'The Fury of a Patient Man' adopts a more muscular approach.  The vocals remain top notch while the guitar sound and overall sonic attack has been beefed up to the nth degree.  This one is worth grabbing for "Bald Bull" alone which is an early contender for song of the year, but don't worry, they're all pretty damn good songs.

Highlights include: "Bald Bull" and "Traci Lords"

Rating: 4.5/5

Total Run Time: 1:01:38

Marc Gaffney- Vocals, Guitar
Barry Spillberg- Drums
Doug Sherman- Guitar
Joe Grotto- Bass

From: Boston, Massachusetts

Genre: Hard Rock, Stoner

Reminds me of: Sam Cooke (?), High on Fire, Lord Fowl

Release Date: April 23, 2013

Better Reviews:
Heavy Planet
The Obelisk
Sludgelord
The Soda Shop
Stoner Hive
The Ripple Effect

Doug Sherman Soulseller interview

Gozu facebook

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