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September 2019
Album review

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard's 'Infest the Rats’ Nest' is a thrilling rock'n'roll romp through inter-galactic dimensions

King Gizzard demonstrate their gift for sonic metamorphosis.
Label: ATO Records
Released: 16th August 2019
Rating: ★★★
King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard's 'Infest the Rats’ Nest' is a thrilling rock'n'roll romp through inter-galactic dimensions
Published: 11:00 am, August 15, 2019Words: Eleanor Philpot.

In dropping new album ‘Infest The Rats’ Nest’ only four months after the sunshine sixties psychedelia of ‘Fishing For Fishies’, Australian rockers King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard demonstrate their gift for sonic metamorphosis. Influenced by the band’s respective teenage obsessions with 80s thrash metal, the new album combines haunting flutes and sexy solos with deep, dark heavy riffs - making for a thrilling rock'n'roll romp through inter-galactic dimensions.

Among the stand out tunes is opener, ‘Planet B’ which with its pummeling drums and frenzied guitar work, recalls 80s Metallica - demonic, wild and pissed off, with killer solos - while maintaining that idiosyncratic gizzard psych, that sees triply guitar lines weave in and out of the thrashing goodness. While ‘Perihelion’ serves its beefy riffs with a strikingly pretty chorus that demonstrates the band’s ear for moving melody, before culminating with a haunting flute ditty.

But it’s trippy good-timer ‘Superbug’ that acts as the albums real highlight, starting out as a Zappa esque groove, before morphing into a heavy classic rock/hardcore sound, complete with Stu Mackenzie’s low moaning vocals. The track’s sinuous solo - that dominates the intro and bridge - is one of the sexiest guitar lines to ever be laid down in the history of popular music. It is a slow, yearning, honey-coated sound that makes you weak at the knees. And with the eponymous creature being described as a blood-sucking monster that ‘never ever stops and never gives a fuck’ it makes you wonder if the whole thing’s a twisted-yet-kinda-hot metaphor for a destructive lover.

While some may dispute the album on account of its formless structure, which opts for a thirty-minute jam session instead of nine neat pop songs, it is its laid back nature that makes it so excellent. Since none of the songs truly end, but in fact run into one another like hot butter, the listener is truly able to lose themselves in this tantalising world of slow yearning basses and paranoid, thrashing guitars. If you want straight-up, easy to listen to tracks, you can go elsewhere. This is King Gizzard we’re talking about. And they never came from our planet in the first place.

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