Stoner/Hard Rock
Punk/Power Pop

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Throttlerod | Nail | review | rock | Lollipop


Nail (Small Stone)
by Brian Varney

Whatever you may choose to say about Throttlerod, you can't accuse them of complacency. Moving from classic rock (Hell and High Water) to the dark and drearily downbeat (Starve the Dead) to the angular, hardcore-tinged punk fury of Nail over the course of three releases, Throttlerod is a band that, as is said of sharks, must either move forward or die.

The loss of a guitar player pared the band down to a trio, and rather than attempt to fill the void created by this loss, they apparently decided to celebrate it. Never has Throttlerod sounded so raw and angular, the awkward gaps in some of the songs left to fester and, eventually, harden as the rest of the band grew more muscular and feral than ever. Nail, then, is the sound of Throttlerod tensing and never releasing, reminiscent of musclehead hardcore as run through classic metal and '70s rock. Lead singer Matt Whitehead, who can actually sing when he wants to, does a lot more yelling and screaming than on any previous Throttlerod release, which I suppose he can't help but do if he wants to be heard over the torrential frenzy of the music. There aren't as many catchy songs here as on Hell and High Water, but I guess that isn't the point. If you want those sorts of songs, H&HW is still in print and available for purchase. Nail's appeal is more emotional, and probably a bit more immediate than other Throttlerod releases: The kind of record with a sweat-streaked face and blood pounding in its ears.


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