huge thanks to Emily Youssef, MacKenzie Wilson, and the entire Spin.com staff!
December 6, 2007
Who? After the prog-tinged alt-rock outfit Cave In announced their hiatus in fall 2006, guitarist/vocalist Stephen Brodsky called up his former bandmates, drummer John Robert Conners (Cave In, Doomriders) and bassist Johnny Northrup (Octave Museum), to assemble the psychedelic garage rock of Pet Genius. The trio issued the Elvis Unreleased EP -- check their MySpace blog for gory details behind the title -- before releasing their self-titled full-length in October via the Hydra Head label.
What's the Deal? Fuller than the White Stripes and more plain-spoken than Black Mountain, Pet Genius smartly plays the line between poppy songwriting and hard pounding riffs. Opener "Doomsday" rips right out of the gate with raw clashing guitar chords and catchy vocals, while the should-be-a-radio-hit "Walls of Etiquette" trembles with revenge before unleashing an unapologetic blast of rawk thunder. But Pet Genius isn't all heart-thumping, in-your-face reverb outbursts. They take a breather on "The Visiting Dynamiter" and "Man of the Mountain," where the guys go acoustic and Brodski gives his best falsetto wails.
Fun Fact: Frontman Stephen Brodsky claims to be an award-winning Bartitsu stick fighter. The martial art was first popularized in 19th Century England and was named by its originator -- a hybrid between jujitsu and his own name, Edward William Barton-Wright. EMILY YOUSSEF
Now Hear This:
Pet Genius - "Man of the Mountain" DOWNLOAD MP3
On the Web:
Pet Genius at MySpace