Atlanta Georgia’s Whores. have made their reputation on the backs of two excellent EPs, Ruiner (2011) and Clean (2013), and a riotous live show that has garnered them fans all over the United States. This praise and tireless touring has earned them a spot at eOne, the home of such heavy hitters as High On Fire and Crowbar. Basically, they have ended up on a major label, which shows that hard work matched with killer tunes does sometimes pay off. But that’s not all.
In addition, Gold, is their first full length album, after a bunch of EPs, and also their first album for their newer, bigger label. With all this pressure, you would wonder if the band would take a major misstep.
Well, you would be wrong, because they have stepped up and delivered, with not only one of the finest noise rock albums of the year, but also one of the best loud rock albums, too.
Gold is everything you could want in a heavy rock record. It is loud (of course), aggressive, pissed off, but also insanely catchy, and very real. All the instruments were recorded crystal clear, so Christian Lembach’s stun fuzz guitar bludgeons you, while bassist Casey Maxwell caves in your chest with his tones, and drummer Donnie Adkinson’s graceful pummeling knocks you back in your seat.
Album opener, “Playing Poor” goes for the jugular right from the start, with its urgency, setting the table for the rest of the album. “Baby Teeth” mines a more mid-paced, but no less destructive groove. “Charlie Chaplin Routine” and “I See You Are Also Wearing A Black Shirt” are two snarling and faster, two-minute and change, blasts of invective. “Mental Illness As Mating Ritual” mines a less loud to very loud form, as the bass and drum churn of the verses, gives way to a full on explosion of fuzz at the chorus.
“Bloody Like The Day You Were Born” gets upsized, from the version that originally appeared on the most recent edition of Amphetamine Reptile’s long running, Dope, Guns & Fuckin’ In The Streets series. It’s heavier and hits harder. Closer “I Have A Prepared Statement” ends the album with a longer, more deliberately paced shot of noise rock, which the band has clearly mastered on past albums with such songs as “Straight Down” off Ruiner and “Cougars, Not Kittens” and “I Am An Amateur At Everything” off Clean.
Gold is one hell of a catharsis of a record. With the spotlight on them, Whores. has delivered a killer loud rock album, one that will surely garner them new fans, while pleasing the diehards. It sets a “gold” standard for noise rock.