Tuesday, May 21, 2013

California X - 2013 - California X

California X is a four piece punk band from Amherst Massachusetts. California X is their debut LP They play a grungy, heavy brand of punk and wear their influences proudly on their sleeves. These songs owe a great debt to bands like Sonic Youth, Jay Reatard and Dinosaur Jr while the singer vocally sounds like Torche. The most redeeming factor of this album is it's heaviness. They combine all those influences into some kind of punk fueled beast that is almost stoner metal in it's heaviness.The main problem I have with this album is the songwriting. The songs are all solid but they roughly all sound the same.

California X have a clearly defined sound, it may be overly reliant on proclaiming their influences but they have clearly found the niche they like. But within that nice there just isn't the variation necessary to truly support a full length LP. Songs like Lemmy's World combine melodic guitars and buried vocals with a wall of noise and an overwhelming sense of heaviness to great effect while songs like Pond Rot just kinda sit there. If you like noisy, grungy punk rock that goes out of it's way to be heavy but still melodic this album will strike gold right off the bat but otherwise you might have to work at it.