By Dan Potter
Often revered as one of the loudest rock outfits in existence, Lightning Bolt’s new album shows a band with an ever-growing appetite for voluminous sonic extremism, setting them further apart from the pack one song after another.
Primarily bass and drums, this experimental duo find no boundary worth respecting as they torch the musical landscape with their special brand of psychotic lo-fi metal.
Underneath thunderous fuzzy bass lines and muscular jazzy drumming is a strange penchant for pop song craft. “Husker Don’t” plays out as a noisy masterpiece with its relentless crushing sonic force but it’s the classic pop melodies hiding below the screeching distortions that will make you check to see if there is something wrong with the headphones. Turning the rave party into pure mayhem is “Big Banger” with its outrageous techno influenced bass riffs that descend and ascend, peaking like the radiation detectors at Chernobyl.
After 25 years together, Sonic Citadel is a fearless example of a band still looking for a challenge and the resulting fury mixed with the unbridled simplicity of nursery rhyme tunefulness make this the Bolt’s most gloriously out of whack production thus far.
Best Track: Husker Don’tLightning Bolt, Sonic Citadel, Thrill Jockey Records