Weedeater – Goliathan (Season of Mist)Tuesday, 25th August 2015
Music only a stoner could enjoy, right? That’s been Weedeater’s longstanding credo; an olive branch to those who would presumably, be so stoned and/or out of it to really grasp the generic nature of the band’s sound. The North Carolina trio have been getting down since 1998, remarkably, owning a handful of cleverly-titled albums like …And Justice for Y’all, and God Luck and Good Speed (which is actually pretty good). Yet the focus is, and always will be on the band’s “weed metal” sound, whatever it so happens to be. On Goliathan, the band’s fifth full-length, it doesn’t take a great amount of effort to see exactly what that is: Watered down stoner rock. (Not saying much.)
As one of the several stoner/sludge bands whose amplifier sound basically dictates everything they do, Weedeater’s rote, Sabbath-aping riffs are certainly weighty. There’s little denying that. But, the sub-bonehead sprawl of the album’s title track and “Bow Down” suggest that any ‘ole stoned stoner could pick up an axe, plug into an Orange amp (or something similar), and let it rip much in the same way Weedeater does. There’s simply no variation to their riffs, or character for that matter. They essentially drift along, passing out high wattage, but nothing else.
The only element that has any sort of intensity or identity for that matter, would be the vocals of “Dixie” Dave Collins, who over top of the bore-a-thon riffing, manages to spit out an angry vocal spell, full froth, and stale beer (most likely). Outside of that, Goliathan may not be much of an album to even pass the time with. Even the tempo fluctuations on “Bully,” where the band picks up the pace, is lost in a mess of D-grade riffs and clunky rhythms. Weedeater probably do a lot right in the eyes of the stoner/doom scene, but man, really hard to identify anything to get riled up about.