Tuesday 14 January 2020

ALBUM REVIEW: Lowrider, "Refractions"

By: Jeff Anderson

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 21/02/2020
Label: Blues Funeral Recordings

“Refractions” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1). Red River
2). Ode to Ganymede
3). Sernanders Krog
4). Ol’ Mule Pepe
5). Sun Devil / M87*
6). Pipe Rider

The Review:

Finally. Finally the legendary Lowrider have returned. Not only have they returned, but they have returned with what absolutely will be a staple for them and their genre in their new album “Refractions” (out February 21st, 2020 via Blues Funeral Recordings). If the band ever says they weren't trying to make a statement that they are absolutely the kings of desert rock then I would call them liars. This record is on a mission to remind you what real desert/stoner/fuzz rock is. If for some reason you doubt that or you don't know who these Swedish giants are, let me put it to you this way: Lowrider have been the kings of desert rock since Kyuss dropped it on the floor in 1996. If you somehow missed out, I feel bad for you. However I can't entirely blame you since it's been a long, long time since Lowrider has released anything. But when they do, man is it the best and you remember why they're so loved.

“Refractions” is no different in hype as expected. Simply undeniable right out of the gate. This band knows exactly what you want in a record like this and they delivered again in a brilliant package. The whole record takes you back to the mid 90's when this was done so perfectly. Sure there are amazing bands pulling it off well today but it's very few and far between for who can make it sound like 1995. If you're a fan of this style then you know that isn't a bad thing by any means. The record is so smooth front to back. Nothing drags, nothing doesn't fit right, nothing that is not meant to be. Vocals of honey and silk, iconic fuzzed out guitars, screaming leads for days and days, some of the grooviest bass to ever be laid down, and drums that shake your soul. The record makes you feel nostalgic but hopeful for the future of the style at the same time. If this is the content others have to compete with then I cannot wait to see what others will start pulling out. Lowrider have definitely raised the bar for everyone. What a time to be a fan of this genre. All these new, young killers that have graced us within the past 10-15 years who will be greats in their own right and that I am thankful for but Lowrider are back to let you know those bands are here because of them. They almost remind me of an old lion; They'll lay dormant sometimes and not cause a stir but when they get up and make the walk again, everyone steps aside and knows who the king is.

The whole record is amazing. It's so hard to even try to pick some stand-out tracks.Red River is such a perfect track to open the record. It instantly puts you right back in the glory days and you can't help but smile if you love this genre like I do. It's the classic sound you love done by those who do it the best. “Ol' Mule Pepe” is so unbelievably groovy that I couldn't stop moving my head and foot from moving along with the beat. And the closing track “Pipe Rider”...man what a way to end this chapter. The tail end of this song is a final reminder that you've just been gifted something very, very special.

This record is an instant classic. Lowrider always have, and I believe will always deliver. I don't care if it takes 20 years for another one, I will be here waiting and I'm sure it'll be another monster. This record gives you everything you want and more. Its 41 minutes of absolute mastery of the craft. Complete beauty wrapped up in 6 songs. I don't know what else to say except thank you to Lowrider for the wall of fuzz that just split my face open.

“Refractions” is available HERE

Band info: bandcamp || facebook