Noktorn. “Live at The Joint MMVI” Review

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Rusty Eye – Live At The Joint MMVI

It’s interesting to see a huge step up come in the form of a live album. That huge step up comes in the form of cohesion. Six years before this one, Rusty Eye released ‘Rust N’ Roll’, one of the weirdest combinations of heavy metal and garage rock that I’ve ever heard. With ‘Live At The Joint MMVI’, the band seems to have worked out all the kinks that plagued the previous album and made some music that’s both unusual and genuinely interesting to listen to.

This is, unlike the debut LP, an almost entirely metal album. As far as set list goes, the band has taken only the most abrasive and metal songs from that album (and thankfully omitted the worst tracks; ‘Who The Fuck Are You?!’ in particular, thank god) and otherwise taken material from the next LP, ‘Stendhal Syndrome’. The material showcased here is very strong indeed, exhibiting a strong prog vibe without going into Dream Theater territory. It’s still got a perceptible garage rock influence, but it’s not nearly as permeating as it was before. This is a good thing: while the original LP was rather confused in its goals, this is much more direct and lucid in composition. The riffs are now uniformly metal, but the rest of the music is able to back them up as well.

This is a nicely recorded live album. It maintains enough acoustic space to be clearly a live production, but has the clarity of a studio production. The performances aren’t perfect, adding a certain level of warmth to the sound, really putting you into the appropriate setting. The tone and richness of each instrument is preserved nicely, with a sharpness to the guitar and definition to the drums that is unusually memorable and quality. In general, the band seems to be more comfortable with their music than before: the vocals are no longer timid (the addition of Miss Randall is a great one) and everything seems to be played with more conviction as a whole.

‘Live At The Joint MMVI’ is a tremendous improvement from ‘Rust N’ Roll’ and an album that I can see myself listening to fairly regularly. It’s nice to see that the band is now able to let their creativity and talent shine a bit more. It’s amazing what production and energy can do, isn’t it?

~ by noktorn on September 25, 2007.