Riddles Are Abound Tonight

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To the casual listener, Sausage -- whose three members formed the original lineup of Primus -- won't sound noticeably different from Les Claypool's main gig. After all, his trademark slap-bass style and cartoonish vocals still command center stage here. But fans will notice the group's more accessible sound right away. Drummer Jay Lane's style is much less extravagent than Tim "Herb" Alexander's, focusing more on holding down a solid groove than showcasing his technical prowess, while guitarist Todd Huth's linear, melodic approach is a universe away from Larry LaLonde's mind-blowing brand of textural noise. Huth's bluesy style helps ground the band's sound in surprising ways, making Sausage a tighter, more focused groove machine. But without the instrumental virtuosity, strange time signatures, and almost constant left-field changes, some fans may find Riddles Are Abound Tonight a bit limited in scope. Still, it manages to rattle the ol' gourd quite nicely.

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