Indeed. If the less than loud, keep it steady ethos of today is getting a bit boring and polite, think again. The essence… heck, the very drugged-out, red-eyed heart and soul… of the dirty, loud, heavy power-trio is not dead. In fact, in the case of Radio Moscow it is literally brimming with rude health.
THE GREAT ESCAPE OF LESLIE MAGNAFUZZ is the Californian-based band’s third album for the highly regarded Alive Naturalsound Records. It’s also a genuinely thrilling follow up to their previous releases, brimming with toe curling Hendrixified guitar soloing and the marijuana and acid laced caterwauling of Blue Cheer, not to mention some seriously impressive blues guitar work (‘Deep Down Below’) that would make Seasick Stevie green with envy!
Yes, they have long hair. Yes they may be stoned. Yes this is the kinda music that caused a stir 40 years ago. And so what? It’s the music of the gods. They know it, we know it and Dan Auberbach (he of The Black Keys, who not only discovered the trio as pot-infused miscreant teens, but also produced their debut) is fully aware of this too.
Today’s “new is old philosophy” works well for Radio Moscow. In an era when The White Stripes and The Black Keys have become unlikely stars, Amy Winehouse (RIP) proved that real soul was where it’s at and youngsters are at last generally open to everything, here we have a band who are ploughing their very own corner of the field in time honoured fashion, unafraid of retrogressive accusations.
The wild card and golden boy of the group Parker Griggs grew up in Story City, Iowa. As a young basement-dwelling cave teen obsessed with mid-60s garage-punk he home recorded a slew of songs in that vein which saw fruition as Radio Moscow (the moniker having been lifted from Nikiita The “K”’s ‘Go Go Radio Moscow’ from the garage comp Ya Gotta Have Moxie Vol.2). However, although never tiring of garage-punk, Parker Grigg’s was excelling at the guitar (and drums – which he plays on all of the albums), progressing musically towards the proto-metal blues of Cream, Hendrix, Sabbath and Blue Cheer. This was apparent on the debut on which Parker played everything bar bass. A demo handed to Dan Auberbach after a Black Keys gig impressed the musician so much he landed Radio Moscow a deal with Alive and produced their startling power-trio infused debut. A further album followed the 2007 debut in 2009. Brain Cycles adhered to the old adage of “if it ain’t broke don’t mend it” and saw the teenage guitar assassins smelt gold from their vintage heavy, psychedelic blues licks. After numerous gigs and fun 2010 saw the band leave Iowa for the liberally minded California after Parker was busted for hash and imprisoned (yep, that happens in the good ole US of A!!!)
Being lucky enough to have one of their songs used in a Radio Shack/Lance Armstrong commercial gave the group enough money to rent a ranch in Northern California. Here was a place that they could rehearse without fearing the neighbours wrath and conceive their third release THE GREAT ESCAPE OF LESLIE MAGNAFUZZ. Zach Anderson plays bass, Cory Berry handles the drums on stage, and Parker plays drums on the album. The wah-and-phased-delirium of an opener ‘Little Eyes’ (which could have so easily graced Blue Cheer’s triumvirate third album Outsideinside) to the funky Grand Funk Railroad vibe of ‘Speedfreak’, the heavy UK blues-rock vibe of ‘Creepin’’ (a tune as good as Free at their best) and the amazing guitar driven rattlesnake raga that echoes Peter Green’s finest moments with Fleetwood Mac, all add up to a wildly pulsating affair, full of energy, passion and psychedelic electricity!
The album art is a throwback to the psychedelic covers of the late sixties/early seventies, and instead of being minimalist, as is the norm these days, the album is a super-sized, gatefold edition that’s a trip in itself. The first pressing is on Blue Vinyl, ltd. to 500 copies (exclusive to Bomp! mailorder, not sold in stores) and will also be available in CD and Digital formats on October 11th through Alive Naturalsound.
RADIO MOSCOW FALL 2011 TOUR DATES
10/14 Blue Lagoon, Santa Cruz, CA
10/15 One Eyed Gypsy, Los Angeles, CA
10/16 Shakedown, San Diego, CA
10/20 Sol, Sante Fe, NM
10/21 3 Kings Tavern, Denver, CO
10/22 Urban Lounge, Salt Lake City, UT
10/24 Comet Tavern, Seattle, WA
10/25 East End, Portland, OR
(more dates to be announced)
FOR MORE INFO ON RADIO MOSCOW:
Source- Pavement PR