Let’s try a bit of free-association. Loud amplifiers and long hair. Crackling vocals, screaming voices. Blues riffs in B, watch me for the changes, try and keep up. Howlin’ Wolf and John Lee Hooker. The sound of a tom drum, a bari-saxophone, a bass and a cymbal colliding, with a handclap on the downbeat. These are the things that kick “Evil Eye” into motion (okay, I’m not entirely sure it’s in B, I just liked the Back to the Future quote), and with it the debut long player from Philadelphia’s Lantern roars out the tracks.
The band is known around these parts for being hard working and hard touring. They’ve criscrossed the country at least three times since we first heard of them a couple years ago. Their discography, as we mentioned yesterday, is a lengthy assemblage of limited-run, lo-fi, home-recorded singles or three-track EPs. It’s a collection showing the affinity that partners (creative and otherwise) Zachary Devereux Fairbrother and Emily Robb have for blues music, early rock ‘n’ roll, and the lore that goes along with it.
The new Rock ‘n’ Roll Rorschach, out next week on Sophomore Lounge Records, shows what those fasciations sound like when taken out of the basement. With a dramatic increase in production value (and a generous retention of sonic grit), these songs are big, booming, aggressive and unruly. This album is Lantern realizing the potential of its vision. Continue reading →