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Porn : Wine, Women And Song

You have to hand it to Small Stone. They've really expanded from their Detroit Rock City roots to encompass all manner of music. Porn's new album, 'Wine, Women and Song' is a case in point. This is twisted heroin metal for the masses. Sure, there's some Iggy Pop mixed in there, but there's a hell of alot more, and it’s by no means for the timid.

Porn (formerly the artists known as Men of Porn) is basically guitar demon Tim Moss and an ever-changing coterie of bassists and drummers. Anyone who's seen them live will testify to the fact that Tim doesn't settle for second best when he picks his touring and recording partners, 'cause the level of musicianship is astonishing. This go 'round we've got producer Billy Anderson on bass and Melvins beater Dale Crover on the drummer's throne, and you don't get much better than that. 'Wine, Women and Song' is basically a follow-up to their first album from '99, 'American Style' on Frank Kozik's infamous Man's Ruin label. Like that album, the music on 'Wine...' is rather song-oriented, though still quite experimental. Moss comes on like a kind of darkside 'Hendrix, layering and torturing feedback while throwing down riffs like it's going to save his life. His infrequent vocals are often more clear and yet more guttural than past efforts, giving the music a demented, seedy feeling like a drunk propositioning women from a rotting doorway with his VD-ridden wang hanging out. This angular, dense music is full of light and dark, not unlike the chiaroscuro-laden mannerist artwork on the inserts, provided by none other than Kozik himself. The musical touchstones vary far and wide, but they're always on the edge: The Blacks ('Sabbath 'n 'Flag), Jesus Lizard, 60s Verve label experimental jazz, Iggy', early Pink Floyd, Melvins, Totimoshi, early Buttholes, and Ufomammut, particularly the new one. If you like any or all of these, you'll mac on Porn in a big way. I particularly dig the second tune, 'Mastodon Entree,' which is a remake of my all-time fave Porn tune, 'Pony Ride' from the essential 'Judge Not' comp. Whaddaya mean you still don't have a copy?

The sound on 'Wine...' is a slammin' wall of midrange, laying particular emphasis on the guitar riffs. While this is fine most of the time, my personal preference would have been for more extension in the 100-300 HZ range, to allow more emphasis on the lower bass frequencies and the bass drum. As it is, the bass has a rather Lemmy-like tone and Dale's tympani seem to resonate more toward the higher end of their register. Nothing wrong with that, I'm just a deep bass kinda guy. In short, this is the best Porn album yet, and I recommend it highly.

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Succulento
2. Mastodon Entree
3. Glory Will Be Mine
4. The Five Books of the Aeneas;
5. Book I. Descent
6. Book II. Assembly of the Silent
7. Book III. Chimaera Awakens
8. Book IV. What New Desire of Blood
9. Book V. Purging by Fire
10. Last Song

Duration : Approx. 52 minutes

Visit the Porn bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Kevin McHugh
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