I’ll definitely admit to look at debut albums through a different lens as opposed to releases from seasoned veterans. Instead of being concerned with how expertly a group has performed a certain style or how impressive the individual songs are, I’m often mostly concerned with potential more than anything else. Memphis’ Namazu is the perfect example of why I do that. The group’s first release is a groovin’ good time, straddling the line between sludge, post-hardcore, and heavy rock ‘n’ roll. There are nicely timed bits of space rock added which give the songs some space and allow the riffs to feel more punchy.
Humorously, Namazu’s sound does have some “works cited,” as the punk ‘n’ sludge of Red Fang, the riffy noise rock of Big Business, and the dexterous post-hardcore of Hot Snakes all play a part in what makes Works Cited a consistently enjoyable listen. To be fair, it takes a little time to find its groove, as “Bactine” is a bit uneven, but once “Gunwhale” pumps through your speakers, you know you’re in for a real treat. There’s real potential in Namazu’s hybrid style for something greater in future releases, as this is a groove ‘n’ roll heavy band that’s not content to rely solely on drones and riffs alone. As it stands, the Memphis-based duo’s debut is more than enough to satiate those looking for some tasty tunes.