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Big Guys

by The Brackish

Big Guys 03:26
Chess Song 07:00
Surf's Down 05:34


For DIGITAL DOWNLOAD go here : thebrackish.bandcamp.com/releases

The Brackish are a thrillingly unique instrumental band formed in 2013, featuring alumni of This is the Kit, Zun Zun Egui, The Liftmen and Marc Ford Band.

At the core of the music are tight arrangements combined with improvisation, featuring interplay between two distinctive guitar voices. Some bands don’t need vocals to say what they mean and The Brackish is one of them. Each tune’s clear conception tells a story - changes of mood and rhythm add a compelling narrative to a vital and visceral sound. The broad vocabulary of the music - psychedelic, metal, jazz, kraut … - conjures all kinds of echoes from Steve Reich to Sabbath, Can and Tortoise.

Quickly building up a reputation for incendiary and occasionally amp-destroying gigs, The Brackish decided to hole up for a week to record their debut album ‘Big Guys’. Successfully capturing the essence of their sound, the album is released on the Lava Thief label in Sept 2014.


"Nothing short of the Sistine Chapel of musical works.

It would be almost impossible to describe each moment of joy that this album holds, but there are a few key moments that exemplify exactly why this is a band that absolutely everybody should be paying attention to.

The second song “Plane and Seal” is a fast paced beat down through each instrument on offer, and sounds as though it could have been thrashed out of Primus with a tender stick. It leaps around different rhythms and poly-rhythms with the kind of grace that would make ninjas cry. On the other side of the coin the very next song “Lightwood Reservoir” starts off sounding like a perfectly inconspicuous blues jam before sneaking its way into an epic post-rock style crescendo of pure ecstatic aural joy and wonder.

Without a moments notice, “Chess Song” begins to pulverise the speakers with heavy distortion and an ominously doom-laden beat that could very well herald the coming of the four horsemen." - Drunken Werewolf Magazine

"Big Guys is a collection of pieces of a misshapen puzzle, all fitting together smoothly with jagged edges. A somewhat doom, somewhat psychedelic, somewhat jazzy, somewhat progressive collection of music that sometimes borders on the edge of improvisation, the instruments constantly talking to each other. Some tracks bring me back to the very early days of Cathedral when they were pure Doom, at other times I can hear elements of jazz guitar with a rockabilly edge. These guys are insanely talented! Each track is like a melting pot for the ears. I would love to see them live as I can imagine they are loud, intense and brilliant. This is the type of instrumental music that speaks to me and makes me happy and sad and thoughtful and angry. Listen to it loudly in a dark room and you will feel a massive release, a certain purification. Try it and you will see what I mean." - Jade Anna Hughes


"The core of the sound is guitar interplay, with the two players contrasting voices always alert to each other even at their most discordant. There’s Beefheart evocations by way of careful disharmonies and fractured structures: the jaunty The Fly Who Spied’ is especially jangly in this respect, yet it still feels impeccable, each element carefully sighed and fitted into place. Jones excels on incendiary drumming when needed but keeps his powder dry when not, rocking a tight backbeat on the doom-laden ‘Fella In The Cella’ until something bigger and heavier sweeps him away, Dave Johnson’s pulsing insistence drives the album’s title track and holds a conductor’s grip on proceedings throughout.

Each number’s clear conception tells a story, changes of mood and rhythm adding narrative drift, and the seemingly limitless vocabulary of the music – psychedelic, metal, jazz – conjures all kinds of echoes from Steve Reich to Mogwai, Can and The Dead. The finale of ‘Surf’s Down’ is exactly what you’d expect, a hectic celebration of rapid guitar and stuttering snare drums that’s a wittily conventional rounding off for an evening that’s launched an outstanding instrumental outfit as well as a little plastic box of tricks. Check the album on the Lavathief band camp site and you’ll agree that both are very worthy of attention.


released September 22, 2014


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Lava Thief Bristol, UK

LAVATHIEF is a DIY label set up by Charlie Romijn in 2009 for the purpose of releasing music and printed matter, often with a focus on handmade small runs.

The latest LAVATHIEF release is 'EDEIDA' by Silver Stairs Of Ketchikan, which is out on Friday 5th June 2021 on LP, CD and digital formats.
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