Darediablo boasts the best '70s Rhodes tone since Jan Hammer's Mahavishnu days, the chunkiest Hammond this side of "The Barbarian," and makes most stoner rock bands sound overproduced—the grit these ten Bedtime Stories end up caked with only adds more oomph! every time. More precisely, Chad Royce, Jake Garcia and Matt Holford are to flat-out rock what Dennis Chambers, Billy Sheehan and John Novello are to funk and jazz. Garcia's primarily a guitarist, though (he overdubs some bass here and there), and ably steers these diabolic vignettes in unison with keyboardist Holford. Royce's role as the problem child of Mr. & Mrs. Paice-Ward won't be matched anytime soon.
Seriously, Stories is nearly as good as Feeding Frenzy: no splicing, no dicing, "Sigurd The Dragon Slayer" is all set to be cued to some action-horror thriller's main titles, it's as malefic as anything by Goblin or Carpenter, or your money back. Dig the disjointed guitar solo! It sounds like some tumoresque extraterrestrial thing trying to wriggle out of its biosheath. Hiccup past "I Know What—" and cry yourself to sleep over the swingin' title track. "Twinkie" is bad-but-oh-so-good-for-you, and "One Way Ticket" lands you smack dab in the middle of the firebombing of an errant iceberg. Thank the Finns for the sauna, but a break from the heat can be a good thing, and the respite we get is a little tribute called "Steve"—McQueen? Austin? Glover? Who knows. This piece is as melancholy as our three daring diablos dare get, so enjoy it while it lasts. Psych! The pumpin' resumes at around 2:30, the chords are whorled out like those little spinning woody things you used to carve, stack and glue in shop class. Actually, "Skipping Rocks" is the token sweet, friendly piece, gentle enough for grandma, until J.G. starts in with his Thurston Moore impression. "Weasel" cuts back in with that agitated feeling the band gets you used to, signaled by quavers doing little flaming jigs across Matt's keyboard—oh, those are his fingers. Never mind. Killer stuff! In fact, the final track is one of the best—no further spoilers.
And these guys aren't well-known because…?
1. Sigurd The Dragon Slayer
2. I Know What Your Bass Did Last Summer
3. Bedtime Stories
5. One-Way Ticket
6. (Gonna Make You) Squirm (Like A Baby Worm)
8. Skipping Rocks
10. Shipping & Handling
Total time – 39:41