August 20, 2014

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard - Float Along – Fill Your Lungs / Oddments

The wild 7-piece band consisting of Melbourne residents under the name of King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard are back with a reissue of two albums.

The wild 7-piece band consisting of Melbourne residents under the name of King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard are back with a reissue of two albums. Their 2013 album, Float Along – Fill Your Lungs and 2014 release, Oddments, are coming together in this deal.

Their earlier release, Float Along, begins with a 16-minute intro "Head On/Pill" that makes the short track list, eight songs, more understandable. The first track is a nice mix of earlier King Gizzard, notably fuzzy guitar sounds and lots of energy, while also combining in some more clear vocals that already begin to separate this album from their 2012 release, 12 Bar Bruise. All the sounds in this song are easy to get comfortably lost in just in time to be broken up by the next track.

When "I’m Not a Man Unless I Have a Woman" rolls around, it begins to steer in the direction that the rest of the album is going, which is essentially a nostalgic and psychedelic experience reminiscent of the 60s.

Mid-album we get to hear The Murloc’s vocalist Ambrose Kenny-Smith flawlessly take over "Let Me Mend the Past", adding yet another great mix of vocals and a nice twist of clean keyboard and guitar sounds.

When the title track rolls around and brings the album to a close, the listener becomes engulfed in a very comforting, psychedelic mix of guitars and vocals that really showcase the versatility of this band. The gentle introduction leads the listener into a peaceful daze that eventually moves into the vocals and prompts you to “just float along, and fill your lungs”. After nearly seven minutes it comes to a satisfying close that ties off Float Along – Fill Your Lungs perfectly.

Moving on to Oddments, the follow-up to Float Along, we start off with an array of crazy instrumentals that never fail to excite and bring the usual energy expected from this band. This particularly chaotic and energetic track sets up a strong starting point for the album and a flawless crash into the second track, a much more calm and groovy number, "Stressin’".

This album goes even farther in stressing all the differences and versatility of this band than ever before. From track 3 "Vegemite" to track 4 "It’s Got Old" we hear vast changes from rough and rock-y vocals to the bluesy intro of "It’s Got Old" that quickly transitions into very clear and catchy singing. We also get a better look at the song-writing in this angst-filled track, as we hear loud and clear, "I’m always saying I’m sorry, and you’re always saying you’re broke. But I’ll keep my hands on the steering wheel, if you keep your eyes on the road".

Between the calm, trance-y track "Work This Time" and the psychedelic "Sleepwalker", we get a quick 17-second track "ABABCD" filled with clashes and crashes and muffled vocals that almost seem unnecessary, but nonetheless do a nice job of breaking up any monotony that could be felt in the album.

Overall the album is a good time and another great showcase of this bands abilities. While there are some pieces that feel unnecessary (perhaps the entire track, "Hot Wax" just based on the annoying growling vocals and repetitiveness of it), it all seems to come together in a pleasant way.

The 20-second final and title track "Oddments" brings it to a quick close in a loud instrument-based track with some very energetic singing. It comes to an end very fast yet somehow leaves the listener feeling satisfied with the album as a whole.

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