Wino - Punctuated Equilibrium
Southern Lord
Classic/Hard Rock, Doom
10 songs (42:20)
Release year: 2009
Southern Lord
Reviewed by Goat

Following the demise of the rather excellent The Hidden Hand, few doubted that Scott ‘Wino’ Weinrich wouldn’t be back with a new project, although why he’s chosen now to finally release something under his own name is a mystery. Still, who’s complaining? Each new project from the man is excellent, a different take on the Doom slash Stoner genre he’s given so much to, and Wino differs from previous projects by toning down the psychedelia and toning up the Rock. At times, Punctuated Equilibrium is practically Bluesy, although as ever it’s hard to pin the music down to a single genre.

The band is made up of the man himself on guitar and vocals, ably supported by Jon Blank of cult Maryland Stoners Wretched on bass, and Jean Paul Gaster on drums, of the more well-known Maryland Rockers Clutch. They’re all more than excellent musicians, especially Gastier whose technicality often gets overlooked, but the main draw here is Wino and if you appreciate your guitar playing then you’ll love this. Opening track Release Me is practically a lesson in Classic Rock, shades of Blues and Doom colouring the background, and is, as ever, marvellously catchy. It’s hard to pick poorer tracks, really, since they’re all excellent, complex little masterpieces of music that will live in your head for a long time after you’ve finished the album. The title track is more speedy and energetic, whilst instrumental The Woman In The Orange Pants builds up fantastically for the Bluesy Smilin’ Road, a song that will be the highlight for Clutch fans.

As ever with this sort of music, it’s the instrumental flourishes that are the highlight for me, and the album is packed with them, little musical explorations that touch upon the magical shining kingdom of Prog without detracting one iota from the songs themselves. Skilful, determined, and a great soundtrack for a lazy weekend, Wino’s music is always a joy to listen to for those, like myself, that think that the 70s were music’s greatest era, and from the Doomy Eyes Of The Flesh to the exploration into the beyond of Wild Blue Yonder, Punctuated Equilibrium is a throwback to the time when music was truly cool. A time when saying things like ‘similar to the mystic tree on the artwork, Wino’s album is a reminder that music is a living, breathing thing, coming to us from a distant land and blessing us all with its very existence’ was hip and groovy rather than eyebrow-raising and strange. Spiritually, this album has more going for it than most of what gets released these days, and few Doomsters should miss it.

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Killing Songs :
Release Me, Smilin’ Road, Wild Blue Yonder, Secret Realm Devotion, Silver Lining
Goat quoted 84 / 100
Other albums by Wino that we have reviewed:
Wino - Adrift reviewed by Goat and quoted 79 / 100
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