Tuesday, 22 May 2012

The 2kDozen 500: #188 - Cactus, "Restrictions"

The Peel Archive strikes again.

I've fallen a wee bit behind in all fact. There are on D, and I'm still listening to bits of C; but what are you going to do, eh? I'm a deeply lazy name, and I probably shouldn't be bothering with hairy auld blues rock albums from 1971. And yet, and yet...

"Guiltless Glider" bears a few hallmarks of the oncoming heavy metal storm. I'm finding this almost as difficult as dub to critically engage myself with. It sounds like rock in its natural habitat, doing what comes naturally and eating the usual fodders. And I don't even believe in the concept of "what comes naturally". Big dark spot on my musical CAT scan, this. It glides out to nearly nine minutes, I can tell you that much. And there is a drum solo. Actually, that seems pretty unnatural - so I'm making a start.

There are some seriously beefed-up Blues to be heard on "Evil", and I get the uneasy image of listening to super-meaty quarterbacks or somesuch, sharing their banal, bloated version of problems at some campus battle of the bands and getting carried up onto record contract glory and sex with women and that. I wonder why the Devil become stadium-sized in the hands of bands like this, amplified to Titanian proportions from the sly chap bluesmen would meet at the crossroads with a glint in his teeth and a contract in his pocket?

"Sweet Sixteen"? Least said about that the better. Predatory rock songs about girls coming of age would kind of make sense from the perspective of sixteen year old boys; but they always sound too throaty and adult to be less than sordid. Can't really make out the lyrics properly, but I don't think I want to listen too closely. "Bag Drag" has the same paranoid metal rattle as early Sabbath, and while it moans about "skies full of kerosene" they seem to be more bothered about "rules and regulations" than any of the wars they mention. Proto-Clarksons, dressed to the nines in jeans and sports jackets. I suppose the key thing about this is that they complain about the soldiers that have died; not the invaded civilians. First world problems. Shiver.

The last track is called "Mean Night in Cleveland" and it's the only one on the scale of the early blues. Perhaps they got taken down one or two pegs during their time in the Rust Belt.

Rating: Enormo-Blues out of Going Through The Motions

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