The bass guitar is often pushed to the back of most music ensembles, mixed completely out of some albums and bassists the world over are the long suffering brunt of musician jokes. However, Beehoover take this much underappreciated instrument, dust it off and place it high upon a pedestal. The Devil And His Footmen (Exile On Mainstream), the band’s latest album, is a fine example of their craft.
As with their previous two releases, the four stringed axe takes centre stage in the dynamic of this German two-piece’s third studio album and turns each of the 11 tracks into a rolling melody of groove and sludgy twang. The stripped down, back to basics approach these guys have towards stoner rock is both raw and organic, yet heavier for it, packing a punch that most bands lose by completely over saturating their sound in reverb and fuzz.
The vocals on second track ‘Egoknights and Firearks’ sit somewhere between J. D Cronise (The Sword) and Zakk Wylde, displaying a vocal range that is not only satisfying to listen to but complements the weighty bass and understated drumming. What we have here is not bog-standard meat and potatoes stoner rock, this is a multi-layered, heavily textured and diverse composition – a lot of effort has clearly been poured into making this record and, thus, a lot of effort should be poured into appreciating it.
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