No Anchor - The Golden Bridge (Own Label)

Original Australian bass driven sludge rock...
Release Date: 
26 Nov 2012 - 12:30am

I've been waiting for this. Since I reviewed No Anchor's Rope/Pussyfootin' EP some moons ago, I'd been pondering how splendid it would be to hear where they would be going next, and The Golden Bridge (their fourth album) is a wholly original affair that delivers on all counts.
No Anchor were keen to let it be known (via their press release) that there were no traditional six string guitars on this release; it's bass, bass, bass all the way - for that alone, I love them - so be prepared to receive a bunch of massively heavy tunes.

The Golden Bridge opens with FTB; a short tune that's almost like minimal electro; a strange little beast to begin the album with, but engaging nonetheless. Then it's into Slack Sabbath with a loose, twanging bass and an absolutely mental use of wah-wah. It's got a rhythm that's similar to the intro on Sabbath's N.I.B; pornographic and sultry. This is a great track with bags of energy that reminds me of a cross between Black Grape and Mudhoney

.Then we get a punky tune in the form of Anna, a snip at just 1m 24s. There's groove aplenty in Loose Gravel which has a break that I absolutely love. No Anchor are obviously enjoying what they do, and this translates into the tunes, which are bursting with an energy that almost grins at the listener. I must admit to laughing in the corner. Nurse was most disconcerted.

One Means has a bent note intro like Iron Man and I wonder if No Anchor are fans of Sabbath or just taking the piss? Either way, I don't care as I'm loving what they're doing. Next up is Electricity with an ambient intro and oceanic influences, while Woodman has some sensual bass and sweet vocal harmonies that rise into a fuzzed out wonderland. Oh Kill, Slabs and Shut Yr Mouth are howling at the moon (and bogans?) in a long dark night of the soul, and they're all top tunes.

As a progression from Rope/Pussyfootin', The Golden Bridge delivers; having an album (and therefore a bigger space to work in) allows the band to go off on musical tangents and explorations that are exceptional, and No Anchor's use of pedals is inspired. That and the fact it's all bass-driven, fucked up sludge. Good work, fellas! When's the next live gig?