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The Men

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What happens when a totally rocking surf band dips its chocolate bar into a noisy, fuzzy jar of mid-1990s SST peanut butter? Tough to say. I wouldn't put it in my mouth. I would, however, happily put it in my ears.


Those familiar with The Men may find comparing them to a surf band farcical. It's not. The twang is there, buried under a sea of Big Muff bass buzz and spectral vocals. One can also compare The Men to so many loud, craftily melodic bands: Dinosaur Jr., Big Black, Fudge Tunnel, Hammerhead, Shellac. Normally, it is an absolute burn to say a band sounds like everyone else within its genre. It implies that they lack identity or singularity. Yet The Men appear to have studied the aforementioned groups, learned the tics and tricks, and created their own amalgam of intense, feedback-laden, distorted conflagration.

The contrast between the drawn-out, leaden pyschedelia of "If You Leave...," the instant bombast of "Lotus" and the Stooges-esque "Bataille" illustrate The Men's ability to create an array of ear-scouring music for all types of destructive behavior. The closer, "Night Landing," is killer Kraut rock resplendent with the energy and efficiency of good German sex.


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