Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Mane of the Cur - Wild Hunt

The thing that first drew me to listen to Mane of the Cur, from Portland, was their fantastic name. Time for breakfast.
Falling within the burgeoning "occult rock" genre (although they describe themselves as "70's inspired harpy pagan rock"), the band's 5 track release, Wild Hunt is more punchy and direct than a lot of bands playing in that style. Its raw sound and live feel work well to capture the feral, scratchy, mid-heavy take on what Jefferson Airplane might have sounded like if they were raised by wild animals.

There are tons of hooks in these songs, but one of the things that really grabs me about this band is how free their music sounds. The drums and guitars drip with feel and it seems as though, not content with confinement to simple repetition, accents and fills are thrown in at whim. There are also parts that sound so loose they might make the whole thing fall apart (the second half of "Hell of the Upside-Down Sinner"). But that all serves to strengthen the effect.

To add to the interest, there are frequent changes in pace, sometimes within individual riffs (see the end section of "Food for Wolves"). Even the parts that slow down to brood in spectral mystery are bookended by staggered, galloping rhythms ("Old Ghost", "Six Demon Bag"). Nothing lingers too long and the songs don't stop moving.

A highly infectious sense of downward melody is present throughout, carried mainly by Sarah Crosley's rich, haunting, reverb-drenched voice. Her vocals are impressive when out on their own, but also when intertwined with the guitar and keys, for example, to create the slithering doom of the verses in "Six Demon Bag", before guitarist Shawn Mentzer takes over to madly solo his way to the end of the song.

As far as I can tell, Mane of the Cur have only been around since last year, and after listening to Wild Hunt, I'm looking forward to seeing what comes next.


No comments:

Post a Comment