November 19, 2009 | | 4

The Company Band, The Company Band

The Company Band: s/t

There are times in life when you’ve got to stop and smell the roses: step away from that bludgeoning breakdown, those guttural gurgles and manic drumming. Sometimes you’ve just got to stop and rock the fuck out. Featuring members for Clutch, Fu Mancho, CKY and Fireball Ministry, The Company Band will help you do just that. Each of the ten songs on their self-title debut album are chock full of chunky riffs, catchy hooks and infectious groove.

Taking on the vocal duties is Clutch’s Neil Fallon, whose delivery and clever lyrics are perfect for the slightly stoner-esque groove the band secretes. Along with Dave Bone on guitars is Fireball Ministry’s Jim Rota. These dudes lay down some of the sweetest riff/hook combos this year. Fu Mancho’s Brad Davis (bass) and Jess Margera (drums) of CKY round out the supergroup laying down a solid rumble and roll. With all these guys together, the result is pure rock and roll — something you would most definitely want played at your next kegger.

Zombie Barricades
Holy hell this is a catchy song! The combination of Fallon’s delivery during the chorus along with the sweet guitar work make me want to listen to this track over and over and… well you get the picture. This is a killer way to open up your debut album. Man, I wish I had the lyric sheet to this one, I’m sure I’m missing a boat load of lyrical gold.

It’s a Confusing World
Goddamn man. I hope these guys haven’t blown their wad too early with the first two songs. “It’s a Confusing World” is another catchy as fuck song that’ll have you nodding along with the awesome guitar work. The chorus on this one is just as badass as the first song, yet may have catchier guitars. After just two songs, I can easily say that these guys meshed together perfectly, combining their own styles into a booze fueled pile of rock and roll.

Djinn and Pentatonic
“Djinn and Pentatonic” has a much different feel to it, starting off with some nicely staggered riffs along with the steady drums. While not as catchy and as party-fueled as the first two songs felt, this one still has a handful of groove and solid structure behind it. There will inevitably be many Clutch comparisons with The Company band, but I think that’s mostly due to Fallon’s distinctive vocals. Musically the bands are similar, but there’s enough on this album to separate the two easily enough. There’s a short, soulful lead starting at 2:46 that’s a nice touch. The remainder of the album is filled with thick groove.

Inline Six
The title to this one is more than appropriate. I can imagine this playing rather loudly at my local autobody repair shop, cigarette butts smoldering near a styrofoam cup of jet black coffee. This song just has that certain vibe to it. Man, this one rocks too!

Hot Topic Woman
“Hot Topic Woman” has a great, rocking opening that’s full of heavy riffs and steady drum work. This one is gritty, raw and stinks reeks of cigarette smoke. I’ve only heard a few of CKY’s work and I definitely think Margera is on top of his game with this album. The guitar work on this song is sweet, as well.

All’s Well in Milton Keynes
A slightly slower start to this next one offers a nice change of pace as Margera’s drums fade in along with some seriously thick bass lines. This one has a much more somber tone as the band works their way through soulful guitars and smooth grooves. The lead at 2:40 is touching and moving as is the second lead at 4:15 that ends out the song. Wow.

Who Else But Us?
“Who Else But Us?” picks the pace back up after the the soulful “All’s Well…” Damn, here’s another rocking track with a great vibe as Fallon belts out some tremendous vocals. From what I can catch of the lyrics, Fallon is also on top of his game in the writing area especially with lyrics like “…chairman of the waterboard…” Classic.

A southern-fried vibe to the guitars dominates this next song as layered vocals start it off nicely. The chorus to “CD&W” is catchy with a slick funk to it. There is some of the more creative drum work and song structure found on the album within this song. The driving mid-tempo pace to this one keeps the political commentary from getting too deep.

Love Means Never Having to Say You’re Ugly
This next track is pure rock n’ roll with a ZZ Top vibe to the riffs. “Love Means Never Having to Say You’re Ugly” is another up tempo monster of a song with rich vocal delivery and rolling rhythms. The extended lead that starts just after the three minute mark is soulful and essentially ends out the song as it fades.

Lethe Waters
A more solemn, bluesy start gets “Lethe Waters” going. It’s a slower paced song that’s a bit dark and brooding. The doomy feel to the riffs is a nice change of pace, as well. The brighter lead just before the three minute mark lightens the mood a bit, but still has a vibe complimentary to the rest of the song, as is the soulful solo to end it. “Lethe Waters” is a great track to wrap up a wonderful debut from The Company Band.

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