8/10 Mike Staff review, 07 December 2011
Neil Hagerty's previous projects are of such consistently high quality that it almost serves to his detriment having to live up to such raging masterpieces as those he produced with Royal Trux and Pussy Galore and later Ian Svenonius's underrated Weird War. No matter, though, he just keeps on going, regularly treating an ungrateful world to the contents of his weird and wonderful mind. This LP is the first Howling Hex album in close to four years and contains four fairly long numbers. The first is has a kind of first-wave-ska-meets-TMBG feel to it that I really wasn't expecting, but it's got a nice reggae-ish bounce to it and it's very charming. The other one on the first side is a longer and jazzier number with a slightly Afro feel to the rhythm guitars and a plodding bassline backing up what's essentially a long and casual guitar solo. Kind of like Golden but slowed right down and without any drums. On the flip, 'Play This When You Feel Low' is a bouncy slice of alt-psych weirdness that almost ventures into early Pink Floyd territory in places. Closer 'A Game Of Dice' reminds me of Hakon Gebhardt's weirdo country efforts. I'm quite struck with how minimal everything on this record is. All the melodies really have room to shine through and I can imagine it staying strong with repeated listens. Yet more quality from Hagerty, then.
9/10 Austin Customer review,
Sooooo goood soooo so so goood... A more cynical soul might ask why Rogue Moon which is a more complex and varied work, should be the limited edition vinyl only thingy and this which is more minimal and focused should be the Drag City release but those people should be skinned alive then beheaded,,, glorious glorious guitar
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