The coolest thing about Amherst, MA's Dinosaur Jr. is that they really could care less about what the mainstream does when it comes to the music that is being brought to the masses along with still having no idea about how huge of an influence they have been on anyone who grew their hair out, wore a flannel shirt and picked up a guitar in the past 25 years. They are also an amazing rock & roll band as well and it shows with I Bet On Sky, the band's tenth album overall and their third since guitarist and vocalist J Mascis, bassist and occasional vocalist Lou Barlow and drummer Murph reunited in 2007 after the original three members disbanded back in the late 1980s. Thank God that happened, because I'd hate to see what music would be like today if Dinosaur Jr. weren't still around kicking ass and taking names wherever they go.
The new album is spectacular to say the least. A great mix of Black Sabbath-esque riffs, Murph's rhythmic drumming abilities that even today I consider vastly underrated, Barlow's mellow, trembling voice on a couple tracks and Mascis' twanging drawl along with his epic trademark solos concoct the infectious sound that Dinosaur Jr. has come to be loved and adored by for decades. It seems like the heavy metal gods, punk rejects and bluegrass good ol' boys decided to have a jam session for the ages and this is what came out of it. Sometimes music is so damn good that it makes you speechless, put into a euphoric state and it's nearly impossible to describe. I Bet On Sky's audial excellence definitely does that to me, with every chord, beat and track just leaving me awestruck and asking for more.
- Rob Duguay
That being said, I kind of feel like Sisyphus and the immensely large boulder is I Bet On Sky. No matter what I do or say I feel like whatever songs I pick from it will never do justice to the sheer perfection that Dinosaur Jr.'s new album entails, much like the boulder always rolling back down the hill no matter how hard Sisyphus tries to push it over. Since I really have no choice in the matter though, here goes something: "Piece The Morning Rain" is a mosh pit anthem with the short, sweet and heavy chords coming from Mascis and Barlow's bass being the backbone of the track. "Recognition" has Barlow on the mic singing all about the need to be appreciated for what you do with Mascis' guitar and Murph's drumming hitting you like a punch in the face with downbeat after downbeat. "Don't Pretend You Didn't Know" is downright funky, describing how playing dumb about something you have full knowledge of isn't really the best way to go. "Watch The Corners" has a straight up sludge-metal tinge to it, if you're fan of The Melvins, Baroness or even Type O Negative this track is definitely one you can get hooked on. I Bet On Sky is in my #1 pick right now for the best album of 2012, don't believe me? How dare you! get yourself a copy of the album and try to prove me wrong.
Dinosaur Jr. will be embarking on a 32-date tour of The United States and Asia starting tomorrow night on October 1st at The Mercy Lounge in Nashville and concluding the expedition at Terminal 5 in New York City two months later on December 1st. For us New England live music fanatics, Dinosaur Jr. will be playing at The Paradise Rock Club in Boston on November 30th. A great homecoming show that anyone who loves rock & roll and has a soul should go to. For fans in Hong Kong, Dinosaur Jr. will be playing The Music Zone at the Kowloonbay International Trade & Exhibition Centre on Halloween. Japanese fans have two chances to check out Dinosaur Jr., either at Big Cat in Osaka on November 2nd or the following night at Hostess Club Weekender in Tokyo. Until Dinosaur Jr. comes to your neighborhood, grab a copy of I Bet On Sky. It'll give your earbuds an orgasm they'll never come down from.
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