Posts Tagged ‘Flesh Panthers’

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Like fellow Chicago rockers Twin Peaks’ latest release “Down in Heaven,” Flesh Panthers are taking a step back from brash garage energy in favor of something a little more “mature” (heavy emphasis on the quotes). With more atmospheric moodiness in the album lead-in and outro, “Willow’s Weep” is much more meticulous and coherent than straight garage rock assault, bringing to mind late-60s Rolling Stones more so than 70s punk.

“Willows Weep” is an absolute stunner. Stoned out rock and roll all smothered in jangly gravy.

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It surprises me every time I listen to it, not because I didn’t think they were capable (their live versions of some of my favorite songs by the likes of Velvet Underground and Bob Dylan showcase their tightness and versatility), but because they’ve made such a remarkable transition from their high-energy garage punk into these really beautiful, compelling rock songs. I really love Flesh Panthers. They’re a brilliant inside secret of the Chicago rock scene that deserves far wider exposure. With “Willow’s Weep,” they’re proving they’re a force to be reckoned with beyond these city walls.

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When Garage Punk four-piece Flesh Panthers dropped their first two releases last year—a seven-inch on Tall Pat and a self-titled cassette on Dumpster Tapes—they sounded like a group of kids looking for the kind of fun that’s hard to tell from trouble. And in case the ragtag, deranged shrieks and squeals of the band’s guitars didn’t make it obvious enough, front man Ryan Zombotron doubled down with his lyrics: on “Bleed Black Leather” from Flesh Panthers, he half screams, “I just wanna stay high forever.”

Zombotron says those recordings are faithful to Flesh Panthers‘ anything-can-happen live sets, but that for their full-length debut the band wanted to try something different. They went into the studio intending to mess with their sound, and they had a field day with noise boxes and the tape head of an old reel-to-reel player, among other gadgets. NGC 2632 puts a psychedelic spin on their messy punk punches: the woozy “Teethe” cleans up some of the band’s sonic muck and dials down the pace, but keeps their noisy euphoria intact.

Zombotron wrote the new album’s lyrics by drawing inspiration from a list of about 100 words and phrases—”flies,” “city living,” and “linear energy,” to name a few. “There’s an insect theme in the album, but there’s also a mysticism that has to do with the planets and stars and space,” he says. Zombotron hopes NGC 2632 is the first of many albums for Flesh Panthers: “Hopefully I can keep on putting out records and people won’t tell me to shut up.”

The songs of Flesh Panthers’ NGC 2632 swagger and sneer with unrelenting attitude, but rather than evoking anger and alienation, it’s the kind of attitude that says, “We’re here, we’re beautiful, we’re going to go wild and have another big ol’ party!” This fuzzed-out record rocks and reels, reminiscent of a mid-July major rager full of all your favorite weirdos.

Mid-tempo stompers “elevator girls” and “47 Eyeballs” allow a glimmering guitar lead to weave through the cocky snarl of vocals.

“Good-time punks, Flesh Panthers unapologetically bust down your front door with their new album, N G C 2632. At first listen, the 12 tracks embody a New York Dolls’ draw and swagger that’s much more glam than what came across on the band’s previous releases. These tracks are fully-fleshed, leaving a heightened ringing in your ears and putting a relentless stomp in your boots.”

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Like fellow Chicago rockers Twin Peaks’ latest release “Down in Heaven,” Flesh Panthers are taking a step back from brash garage energy in favor of something a little more “mature” (heavy emphasis on the quotes). With more atmospheric moodiness in the album lead-in and outro, “Willow’s Weep” is much more meticulous and coherent than straight garage rock assault, bringing to mind late-60s Rolling Stones more so than 70s punk. It surprises me every time I listen to it, because they’ve made such a remarkable transition from their high-energy garage punk into these really beautiful, compelling rock songs.

http://

http://

Like fellow Chicago rockers Twin Peaks’ latest release “Down in Heaven,” Flesh Panthers are taking a step back from brash garage energy in favor of something a little more “mature” (heavy emphasis on the quotes). With more atmospheric moodiness in the album lead-in and outro, “Willow’s Weep” is much more meticulous and coherent than straight garage rock assault, bringing to mind late-60s Rolling Stones more so than 70s punk. It surprises me every time I listen to it, not because I didn’t think they were capable (their live versions of some of my favorite songs by the likes of Velvet Underground and Bob Dylan showcase their tightness and versatility), but because they’ve made such a remarkable transition from their high-energy garage punk into these really beautiful, compelling rock songs.

I really love Flesh Panthers. They’re a brilliant inside secret of the Chicago rock scene that deserves far wider exposure. With “Willow’s Weep,” they’re proving they’re a force to be reckoned with beyond our city walls.