Example 22 is the aptly named 22nd album from Nick Saloman, AKA The Bevis Frond. Saloman is equally at home stamping on his Wah-Wah pedal to create expansive psychedelia as he is gently picking a tune on his acoustic guitar. Example 22 is the follow-up to 2013’s epic White Numbers and Saloman utilises the same backing band.
7/10 Penrith Steve Customer review, 8th October 2015
Guitar led melodic rock – a good thing when we’re talking about The Bevis Frond. They have been an influence on some of my favourite bands in their 28 years and I could pick two of those bands to broadly describe their sound – it’s the guitar exuberance of Dinosaur Jr and the melodic sensibility of Teenage Fanclub with a healthy dose of progressive psychedelic rock thrown in.
Anyway, their new album, “Example 22” is a pretty good one. Opening track “Are We Nearly There Yet?” is a 5 minute song extended by a breakdown in which couple of minutes of guitar noodling takes place. It’s a great song, mind. There’s always a handful of real winners on Bevis Frond albums and the first one here is “Waiting For Sinatra”. This is followed by “Longships” which is also great and reminiscent of Teenage Fanclub. “I Blame The Rain” is thick soup of psychedelic melody and ostentatious guitar solos, and as much as I love a good guitar solo, I find this a bit self-indulgent and it ruins the mood a bit – J Mascis and Neil Young have been found guilty of similar in the past so it sort of goes with the territory. Getting us back on track though is “Hot Sauce or Nothing” an almost new wave-style rocker. “Backanile” and “Come With Us” add to the list of stand out tracks.
Of the longer songs on here, 9 minute epic “Pale Blue Blood” stands out, despite it being part good song – part “November Rain” (It’s the over-the-top guitar solos again). Closer, "Well?" is good too.
All in all, the good outweighs the bad and its another enjoyable album from Bevis Frond.
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- Example 22 by The Bevis Frond
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