Sun 17th May 2015
The Italian stoner rock scene has been reported on fleetingly but recurringly during our years running this website, a steady flow of bands keeping alive the embers of a once vibrant genre. Quality has varied, and originality not always at the forefront, but there's always been strength and some fantastic highlights. Prehistoric Pigs are not exactly new to me, I've heard them before on their split with Electric Taurus, but this is my first time listening through an album, and I'm warmly impressed. While still sharing memories of the Californian desert sound over a toke with friends, it pulls this way and that among psychedelic lines to stand out.
There's a Colour Haze, Elektrohasch vibe to much of the instrumentalism here which flows smoothly and subtly in and out of the stoner riffs. Then Universally Droning turns up the dials and clobbers you over the head unexpectedly with heavy guitar meanness, then followed by Red Fields' delicateness. It's refusal to stand still is commendable and those itchy feet allow for an engrossing listen. From Brant Bjork to Torche, other pointers of influence, relatively poles apart, stream through your mind the deeper you delve.
The widdly solos and big riffs of Shut Up, It's Raining Yolks are a high point, the loose krautrock space rock chills of When the Trip Ends another. The violins within Hypnodope offer stark contrast to the surprising sludge threat offered around them, while Zug is bold riff front and centre as dictated in the Karma to Burn instrumental stoner rule book.
Some of the changes are a little too heavy handed, layed on too thick, especially the moves towards the darker fringes, and, as often is the case in instrumental bands, I'm left slyly wondering if it could be even better with a vocalist. Never the less, Everything Is Good is a welcome chance for me to shower a (loosely) stoner rock album with praise, after a doom dominated few years for myself, and lack of anything quoting Kyuss as an influence to honour with platitude. They never perfect any area they land on, but the surprises at every turn and range of sound make this a welcome release worthy of attention.