Big Ass Truck

The Rug

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Proof positive that eclectically for its own sake is not necessarily a good thing, this Memphis-based quintet's experimental rock sound is difficult to pin down. Sure, the lineup may seem normal at first glance, with vocals, two guitars, bass, drums, and a fifth man handling loops, beats, and turntables. But Big Ass Truck's sound jumps around more than hyperactive kangaroos listening to House of Pain, making The Rug a largely hit-and-miss proposition. The opening track, "The Path," may have you ready to compare them to Medeski, Martin & Wood, but the tweaked-out jazz-pop of "The Wardrobe" is so damn jumbled, you'll start to second-guess your first impression. The piano-driven pop of "Locked In" may remind you of a less compositionally mature Ben Folds, but the hypnotic percussion, spaghetti western guitar, and children's chant of "The Me" sounds like nobody you've ever heard before. Ultimately, Big Ass Truck comes across as either a young band still in search of its own sound, or a frustrated one who've been through the industry ringer enough times to just have fun and not give a damn what critics think. Either way, it makes for a frustratingly erratic listen.

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