steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Dirty Bird / Gravitron / Birdwing

"Black Wing EP" split EP

4 Walls Records

Genres: stoner rock, hard rock, sludge

Dec 13 - 19 2004

Dig it.  4 Walls Records has lasted a full year (a major timeframe in the world of independent record labels), and they're out to celebrate.  The Black Wing EP features two songs apiece by each of the label's three bands, and if you're a lover of fuzzy stoner rock, you're in luck.  But act fast - only 375 copies of this have been produced, each hand-stamped and hand-painted (with a black feather attached for good measure).

First off we've got Dirty Bird (Louisville, KY), a down-and-dirty sludge-rock group purveying pulverizing music recorded with lo-fi production methods.  Featuring Glasspack and Monster Magnet members, it's an ambitious project - and it doesn't disappoint.  If you think "storage shed zombie rock" sounds like fun, you're in for a treat.  The band's debut full-length is coming soon from 4 Walls, so I'll be looking forward to that.

I'm familiar with Gravitron (Chicago), so I was looking forward to taking in their two songs.  I was not disappointed.  This is fuzzy, heavy stoner rock not far off from the MeteorCity sound, but more grittily produced.  Both these songs will be released on the band's upcoming sophomore album, which sounds like it's coming along very nicely.

Birdwing (Louisville) closes out the set with some explosive, insane hard rock.  The vocals are haunting and penetrating, and the guitar and rhythm section just drill in to you.  All-out rocker "Let Them Know" is probably the best song on this entire EP.

4 Walls should be commended for releasing yet another solid record - this EP has me really primed for the label's future releases.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 6 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2004]