The Band Whose Name Is A Symbol are all about combining heavy psych-rock with the aesthetics of improvisation. Most of their releases have been super limited edition, but Masters Of The Molehill reaches wider levels of distribution (350 vinyl copies) thanks to Cardinal Fuzz. A classic psychedelic sound, expertly delivered.
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- Masters Of The Molehill by The Band Whose Name Is A Symbol
8/10 Robin Staff review, 24 November 2015
This band is not Prince. Nor do I think they will ever cover “I Could Never Take The Place of Your Man”, I’m afraid. The Band Whose Name Is A Symbol are named with a super-meta snideness but actually make pretty anonymous psych rock that is happier to meander than it is to transcend, enveloping waves of distortion before becoming a rhythmic trial of pedal worship and decent riff-raff. At points they lock into grooves that feel half old-skool rock, half motorik, with cymbal-heavy drums placating moaning guitars of psych-savvy Boris. Basically this kinda reminds me of that scene at the end of School of Rock where they jam “It’s A Long Way To the Top” for fucking ever, only this goes hard and is quite nice indeed.
On ‘Masters of the Molehill’, Symbol dudes meld a love of improv with a seemingly preternatural understanding of psych songcraft; these tunes can go and go with repetition and only slight modulations to the guitarwork around the corner, before striking out on a glorious cadence that rings the whole thing out with a sudden significance. At other times, they fuzz up their guitars to add a layer of stoner disdain, keeping the core of the guitars clean and dandy. Hearing it for a second time is essential; it hammers home the amount of work actually spent on crafting these numbing tunes, both in performance and engineering.
Cardinal Fuzz have gotta stop releasing these secret funtime records; the psychedelic Scrooge in me can hardly take it.
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