Blue Snaggletooth

Dimension Thule

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Dimension Thule Review

by Mark Deming

In a world where metal has been sub-compartmentalized within an inch of its life and many otherwise worthy acts play hard rock that drips with irony or affectation, Blue Snaggletooth are a breath of fresh, smoky air -- a band that plays thick, crunchy hard rock that hits hard, isn't afraid to swagger, and was clearly created by people who dig real rock with all their hearts and souls. While Blue Snaggletooth's debut album Dimension Thule falls within the musical and thematic boundaries of stoner rock and harkens back to foundation-era hard rock, metal, and psychedelia from the late 1960s to the mid-'70s, unlike many of their peers, this doesn't sound like a gesture of playacting or misplaced nostalgia. These guys get this stuff, and it clearly comes naturally to them, from the towering wall of guitars courtesy of Chris "Box" Taylor and Jess Willyard, the rich, subsonic bass of Ian Harris, and the lively, well-textured drumming of Ian "Pit Viper" Sugierski to the songs, built around powerhouse riffs, swirling melodies, and lyrics that embrace life in a land of fantasy while making it sound real and adventurous instead of ridiculous. Blue Snaggletooth reach for the epic in this music, but there's also something that's admirably down-to-earth and B.S-free about their approach to the material, and as proud Michiganians, they were obviously informed by the MC5's famous credo of "Kick out the jams or get the f--k off the stage." Dimension Thule is big, powerful, and heavy, but there's hardly a single wasted gesture on this album, and the musicians play together with the single-minded obsession of a mighty beast determined to lay waste to your town and move on. It's easy to play music like this and sound either goofy, or as if you're stuck in the past, but Blue Snaggletooth have avoided those particular pitfalls, and Dimension Thule is tight, powerful, and heroic, a rock & roll broadsword that crushes its competition and holds the scepter high. Crank it up, light it up, and let the thunder reign.

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