For the longest time, when people into heavy music asked us who the best band in SF was, we would generally say Burmese (of course), maybe Slough Feg, sometimes the Fucking Champs, if they said EVER, then it would be Weakling hands down (or, well, we could argue for hours). But over the last few years, more and more amazing heavy bands have been giving those other bands a run for best-heavy-band-in-the-city money, none moreso than boy-girl-boy doom-crush psych-sludge trio Prizehog, who over the course of the last couple years have become the sort of band that should be HUGE. Every Melvins Nerd and Harvey Milk obsessive out there, should WORSHIP these guys (and gal). It’s definitely only a matter of time, their records kill, but live they DESTROY, their set at our South By Southwest showcase was a stunner, and they sort of stole the show, and it’s not hard to see why, especially here, on Prizehog record number two (number three if you count their long out of print debut cd-r), which finds the band further honing their sound, still present are of course massive skull caving drum pound, churning downtuned guitar chug, percolating sci-fi synths, the Melvins / Harvey Milk still huge, but Prizehog seem to want to be both a psychedelic space sludge band, and some sort of sludge pop band, and it’s that split personality, that makes this shit rule, every song a push and pull between all out freakout, and hook heavy crunch, and somehow, instead of opting for one or the other, they simply figure out a way to do both at once, weaving impossibly catchy melodies, hooks galore into blackened doom sludge dirges, and then stretching that shit out into droned out psychedelic heaviness. The vocals a deep dramatic croon, the keyboard unleashing all manner of textures and psychedelic sounds, everything tangled up with the group’s progged out downtuned crush.
All three songs here are great, but the 11 minute closer might be THEE jam here, a brooding slow build, all super textured and psychedelic, with some haunting harmony vocals, and twisted FX over a churning chug, and some doomic pound, the group allowing for lots of space, letting notes ring out, and gradually decay before the next hit, stretching it way out, before exploding into some serious mathed out noise rock pummel, only to then blossom into some weirdly progged out epic majestic bombast, before devolving into a closing coda of dirgey drum creep and blown out guitar moan, before a final blast of mathy crunch.
Released on the legendary Gravity Records label, which makes Prizehog labelmates with groups like Mohinder, Heroin, Clikatat Ikatowi, Angel Hair, The Locust, Man Is The Bastard, Universal Order Of Armageddon, Unwound and more! Fuck Yeah! -Aquarius Records
released May 1, 2012
PRIZEHOG is Rion (guitar, vocals), Vern (synthesizers) and Zakk (drums)
Recorded by Kurt Schlegle.