Stoner/Hard Rock
Punk/Power Pop

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The Illuminati | review | rock | Lollipop

The Illuminati

(Liquor & Poker)
by Martin Popoff

These Toronto stoner rock darlings have had a strange but, er, illuminated career thus far, with lots of way-big press and confusing fits and starts and now the reissue of their EP, remastered, embossed card sleeve with video and lyrics, sold for a cheap three bucks. It's six tracks at 16 minutes, but it feels nicely rich and full-bodied. First off, like Fireball Ministry, there's a strange and fer sure deliberate choice to turn off the treble. One surmises this forensic archival rock band wanted it to sound not only like a record on Columbia from '72, but a shoddy one. The songs are so cool though, this whole hillbilly Thin Lizzy thing making sense, if you heavy it up with the Sabbath always (somewhat tiringly) necessary to make mod stoner rock loud enough to be heard. Raging Slab is a good comparative, especially come gleeful hoe-down "On My Way Back Home... Again," with "All The Time In The World" being a highlight with its faint Thin Lizzy heartbeat made bulbous and bursting and intrusive. Hell, all of these are a blast, all showing a different cowboy fringe side of the '70s, not a duffer among them. The label will be issuing the full-length this spring. Cop to the convoluted buzz band release schedule of these hirsute power trio rockers and realize that the buzz is certifiably justified.


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