The Upshot: A fierce, no-holds-barred psychedelic assault that will leave you wasted yet enriched when the smoke finally dissipates.
BY JONATHAN LEVITT
Pontiak’s latest record is a crack to the jaw with a pair of brass knuckles. Blistering in its delivery, opening track “Easy Does It” smokes everything in its path. With muscular drumming and simmering psychedelic guitar cut with atmospheric vocals, the band produces a two-barreled, full frontal assault that was a one two punch to my cranium.
“Ignorance Makes Me High” quickly ensues, with its heavy double tracked rumbling guitar. Forging elements of Chicago band Tar and dope smoker bands Sleep and Electric Wizard, the song shudders and grunts its way towards the light. Rarely do I review an album where the top three cuts are so distinct yet so devastating when taken as a unit. “Tomorrow is Forgetting” is Pink Floyd meets Loop, with its narcotic singing and repetitive melodic line. These blokes can sure play the hell out of their instruments, which makes the album all-the-more powerful.
The album flows at a consistently high level. The guitar solo on “Dirtbags” smokes hard, and makes it easy for me to imagine that these guys probably put on a killer live show. The bio on the band mentions that the members live on farms in Virginia. I’m apt to believe they highlight that point because it’s isolation that allows a band like this to make music first and foremost for themselves and their friends, like an early Kyuss did. “Herb is My Neighbor” is an homage to the sweet leaf that swirls and permeates every track. “We’ve Fucked This Up” is a psychedelic odyssey of epic proportions. Swirls upon swirls of distorted guitar curl and eddy over a militaristic beat. The song has three distinct phases, the final one being a victorious march towards the blinding light off in the distance.
On Dialectic of Ignorance Pontiak have scorched the earth with their fierce, no-holds-barred psychedelic assault that will leave you wasted yet enriched when the smoke finally dissipates.
DOWNLOAD: “Easy Does it” “Ignorance Makes Me High” “Tomorrow is Forgetting” “We’ve Fucked This Up”