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Black Elk: Black Elk

The self-titled debut from Oregon's Black Elk is a mixed bag of metal, hardcore, and psychedelia that has it's moments, but tries too hard to be something along the lines of early Soundgarden, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Monster Magnet, or the Melvins. In many instances, there's just too much disjointed noise, and not enough reliance on riffs or anything resembling focused songwriting. When the band lapses into avant-garde psychedelia, like on "Elk Takes Night", things get a little interesting, as the multitude of jangle guitar noodling and riffs provide plenty of both dissonant and atmospheric drama. Also, when things get downright slow and doomy, as they do for part of "When I'm a Ghost" and "Baby Liver" (before they break into manic screamo-Dillinger mode) you can almost say that these guys might have a future as a competent stoner band if they so choose. The CD's best tune however is the 8-minute foray into tripped out guitar jams called "Who Knew?", and it almost asks the question "who knew we could pull a tune off like this?", which I'm left wondering why they didn't do more of this type of song. More often than not, there's just too much screaming and dissonant, disjointed garage rock mayhem here that on the whole doesn't really work. That being said, there are flashes of promise, so it will be interesting to see which Black Elk shows up for their next release.

Track Listing
1) Toggle
2) My Lil'
3) Toss You To the Wolves
4) Eyebone
5) Elk Takes Night
6) When I'm a Ghost
8) Baby Liver
9) Cuddles
10) Who Knew?

Added: November 6th 2006
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Crucial Blast
Hits: 1681
Language: english

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