Big Business - Mind The Drift
Hydra Head
Experimental Doom/Stoner
8 songs (34:45)
Release year: 2009
Big Business, Hydra Head
Reviewed by Goat

I had honestly never heard of this band before they started playing with the wonderful Melvins on bass and (second) drumkit, but it appears I have some catching up to do! Joined for this album by guitarist Toshi Kasai Big Business play a pounding yet melodic form of Stoner, twisting rhythms constantly and heading in an experimental a direction as they can. The songwriting’s very progressive, very varied, and always interesting; psychedelic guitar riffs zooming past the intricate drum-bass interplay with vocal harmonies that are somewhere between The Beach Boys and well, Melvins. Fearest thee not, O whiners: there’s not a vast deal of difference between the two bands and it’s easy to hear that Buzzo and co have been a massive influence on Coady and Jared, and whilst Big Business have a similar whimsical approach, the execution is different enough to be listenable without eye-rolls. Mind The Drift is more instantly appealing that the last Melvins album, the opening drum rolls of Found Art giving way to a great song that will have anyone who hears it nodding along.

That’s the great thing about this album, the fact that as instantaneous as it is, it really holds up to repeated listens. There’s a slightly foreboding air to the vocals and melodies that gives the album its own atmosphere, and the prog approach to songwriting means that you’ll be held entranced each listen. Again, the catchiness of the album cannot be understated, and there’s not a bad song present, the old-school swing of Cats, Mice like something transported from a classic musical and given a Sludge overhaul, the pounding heaviness of I Got It Online like Sonic Youth after too many bad hallucinogens. Although the shorter songs like The Drift are the main appeal, the best track present is without a doubt the eight-minute finale, Theme From Big Business II, which starts with ambience and soon Dooms out spectacularly with little touches of melody which grow into an epic outpouring of Prog goodness, sounding like something straight out of the early 70s as acapella harmonies and Genesisian touches mingle to produce a wonderful finale to the album.

If I have one complaint, it’s that after hearing the last track the earlier, shorter songs seem less good by association – fewer and longer songs would have been better, and whilst the limited edition comes with 2008’s Tour EP III as bonus tracks the album’s still pretty short. It’s not enough! We want more, guys! More of the likes of Ayes Have It, sombre melodies melded with Doom stodge in a genius combination, widely skirting Torche’s punk-poppiness in favour of old-school pop, something far better and more fun to listen to. Here’s hoping that Big Business’ next album is Mind The Drift pt 2, and that it comes soon.

Killing Songs :
Found Art, Cats Mice, Ayes Have It, Theme From Big Business II
Goat quoted 85 / 100
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