The 10-track release, recorded by Brian Olive and mastered by Dave Davis, features a number of re-recorded songs from Filthy Beast’s early singles as well as brand-new material worked up by the latest iteration of the band. Filthy Beast initially began four years ago when guitarist/vocalist Luke Darling and drummer Dave Reid immediately began jamming together after the breakup of The Dukes Are Dead, with keyboardist/guitarist Noah Spradlin making it a trio. Spradlin departed, which led to a lengthy hiatus, but Darling and Reid eventually reunited, connected with scene veteran Zach Madden and then welcomed Spradlin back to the Filthy fold last year.
Filthy Beast’s first full album, featuring artwork from Rachel Fisher and printed with loving care by Aaron Madrigal’s CincinNative, is a full bore marvel of bracing Indie Rock verve and expansive Classic Rock authenticity. That range is aptly displayed on the one-two punch of the album’s openers: “Creeper” is a glitter-sprinkled Glam sandwich with a greasy side of Garage, which is followed by Darling’s self-described “fuck-the-man” ode “Trees,” a gentle Prog/Folk anthem that simultaneously channels Traffic and The White Stripes. And as far as Filthy Beast is concerned, there’s plenty of room for diversity within that wild spectrum, from organ-driven horror Rock (“Without Me”) to Stonesy swing and swagger (“Soothe the Beast”) to smears of gritty Garage Soul (“Wiggle,” “Dust Bowl”).
The quartet’s estimable gifts are most prominently displayed at the close of the album, as “Dracula’s Second” careens with the reckless abandon of a Psych Pop soundtrack outtake from The Fast & The Furious, while “Secret Circles” blisters like vintage T. Rex/New York Dolls with a dusty desert vibe. “Emerald + Ivory” finishes the disc on a reflective and epic note, as minor key dissonance and melodicism swirl and swoon to create a six-and-a-half-minute atmospheric flourish that is powerful and compelling.
Filthy Beast works a musical corner where a good many sins can be covered simply by Spinal Tapping the volume upward, but these guys absolutely understand the inherent beauty of nuance and the allure of subtlety and adorn its debut full-length with plenty of both, even as they peg the needle deep into the red. Visit filthybeast.bandcamp.com for more info. (Review by Brian Baker)
Ironfest VII: The Lineup
The massive annual Ironfest (read an interview with founder/organizer John Gerhardt here) returns Friday and Saturday to take over all three stages of the Southgate House Revival (111 E. Sixth St., Newport, southgatehouse.com). The stellar lineup of primarily local acts includes some of the finest Rock bands in the city (from Punk to Metal to Indie Rock), and also includes a few non-Rock surprises. Admission each night is just $5 in advance (though ticketfly.com).
Greater Cincinnati acts on the bill Friday night include Calumet (which is releasing its debut album, Modern Myths, on the same night), an acoustic set from 500 Miles To Memphis, Current Events, Bloodgate, Carbomb, Lovecrush 88, Dark Soul, Mala In Se, JIMS, Roosevelt, The Z.G.s, Smoke Signals, DAAP Girls, Honeyspiders, Casino Warrior, Mudpies, Smoke Healer, Clouded, Mollusk, Chalk Eye, Draculas, Valley Of The Sun and Tiger Sex.
Saturday’s Ironfest lineup is headed up by a reunion set from high-energy local faves Banderas and a rare appearance by long-running local rockers Black Tractor, plus Go Go Buffalo, Straw Boss, Knife The Symphony, France vs. France, Hand Of Doom, Vampire Weekend At Bernie’s, Heavy Hinges, Moonbow, Martin Luther & The Kings, The Perfect Children, Hot For Alice, Lockjaw, all-star Ironfest-only group Blood On The Blade, Ampline, The Tillers, The Dopamines, War Curse, The Skulx, Dead Man String Band, Jess Lamb and The Factory and more.
Music begins at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
CONTACT MIKE BREEN: [email protected]