Sasquatch

III

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For a minute there, stoner rock fans were worried that they'd caught the last glimpse of Sasquatch -- da band, not the big-footed one -- as the years since their excellent second album mounted beyond three, but it turns out the L.A. trio was simply breaking in a new bass player (ex-Tummler man Jason Casanova) and stocking up their riff box in preparation of this third sighting arriving in early 2010. Well then, as the saying goes, patience truly is a virtue, because the end result may just qualify as the band's best record yet. Plugging in right where they left off before, it's no exaggeration to say that Sasquatch conjure previously unknown thresholds of fuzz-distortion out of their amps while laying down the earth-rumbling foundation for power chord bonanzas like "Get Out of Here," "Pull Me Under," and "Leave It Up to You." And when he isn't wringing out seemingly infinitely sustaining power chords and exciting leads out of his Gibson Les Paul (watch his deft fingers rescue "Walking Shoes" from stoner blues mediocrity), leader Keith Gibbs once again proves his mettle as both vocalist (hear him go almost Chris Cornell on the impossibly heavy doom grind "Queen") and chorus architect -- a luxury very few stoner rock bands possess. III isn't without imperfections of course: "Soulshaker" and "Bare My Soul" both trundle along somewhat inconspicuously, and the part-acoustic "New Disguise" sounds a little too familiar to experienced stoner rock ears. But not even these can dent the album's overall high quality and consistency, making it three stellar efforts out of three for Sasquatch, and boosting their reputation as one of the last true-blue stoner rock bands that still matter.

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