Tomahawk - Oddfellows

Keeping the experimental flame gently burning

It’s been 20 years since Mike Patton made Angel Dust, his band Faith No More’s masterpiece, and it’s not unreasonable to suppose that a major chunk of his fanbase is hoping that he’ll make that album again with one of his other projects.

Tomahawk, returning with their first album in six years, haven’t gone in that direction by any means, but there’s a spirit of experimentalism and a refusal to adhere to any given template that harks directly back to those simpler days of 1992. The band, featuring Melvins/Mr Bungle mainstay Trevor Dunn on bass this time out, cover territory as diverse as frantic rockabilly (Rise Up Dirty Waters, Typhoon), ethereal noir soundtrack music (Choke Neck) and spaghetti western hokum (I Can Almost See Them); but no all-encompassing term, even prog, does it all justice. Not that Oddfellows is the perfect album: more than a few songs sound wilfully half-formed. Best approach it as a mixed bag which will give up its secrets slowly, if at all, and doff the cap one more time to its creator’s skewed approach to this rock music thing.

3 stars 3 stars 3 stars

Ipecac | IPC 142 LP (CD / LP)

Reviewed by Joel McIver
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