Yob, Acid King, Black Cobra | Reggies’ Rock Club | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader
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Acid King

Acid King

Raymond Ahner

When: Thu., Oct. 29, 8 p.m. 2015
Price: $25, $20 in advance
I’m tempted to say that you can learn everything you need to know about this spring’s Middle of Nowhere, Center of Everywhere (Svart), Acid King’s first album in ten years, from looking at its cover: drawn in the style of a gonzo shore-leave tattoo, it depicts a blue-robed wizard, his staff erupting with lightning, riding a bug-eyed tiger across the moon. But that would do a disservice to this venerable San Francisco stoner-doom trio, founded in 1993 by vocalist and guitarist Lori S. (formerly married to Melvins drummer Dale Crover, for you metal-trivia buffs) and drummer Joey Osbourne. (Their sixth bassist, Mark Lamb, has been on board since 2008.) Acid King wrap their bluesy slow-motion riffs in pillowy fuzz, and Lori’s luxuriant string bends and drifting, faraway holler make the songs feel like they’re moving through clear gelatin instead of air. Her lyrics, sung clean and strong with no vibrato, are mostly evocative nonsense that sounds good delivered in long, dilated syllables. The songs balance repetition, permutation, and novelty to keep their lulling grooves from tipping over into tedium, and Osbourne’s loose, swaggering drumming bustles with clever flourishes that inject it with buoyancy despite the syrupy tempo of the core beat. The down-tuned guitars growl and thrum at such low frequencies that at sufficient volume they’ll give you the same sort of full-face buzz you get if you try to sleep on a bus by leaning your head against the window. Middle of Nowhere, Center of Everywhere reminds me so much of the pleasant parts about being stoned that it almost makes me wish I still smoked weed.
— Philip Montoro
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