Photo by Gene Smirnov
Bobby's back, baby!
On August 21, Peaceville Records will release Pentagram's new—well, "new"—album (their first studio effort since 2011), and if you like your riffs low, slow, and painful, you're going to want to scroll on down and get an early taste. Like the band's well-received Last Rites, Curious Volume is a chimeric beast, a hodgepode of new and old recordings that date back to the 70s. The dusty stoner grooves are kept intact, nurtured and coddled by Liebling's admirable disinterest in leaving them behind. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, and no one knows how to wrangle doom, despair, and tone like Bobby Liebling.
He wrote the songs "Lay Down and Die," "Earth Flight," and "Sufferin'," whose bluesy swing belies the dire title, in the 70s. "Misunderstood" was first aired back in the 80s, but never made it to wax until now, and "Because I Made It" was written in the 90s. Joined by guitar wizard Victor Griffin, bassist Greg Turley, and drummer Pete Campbell, Liebling's tortured whine brings these vintage gems back to life, and newer tunes see him trying out a new trick or two (like the deep, Neil Fallon-esque richness he adds to his voice on "The Devil's Playground," for example).
Not every song's a keeper (the 70s-era compositions still hold up best) but it's a solid collectioin, and a good representation of where Pentagram is now—edging forward, but still looking backward. Be forewarned...
Catch Pentagram live while you have the chance—Bobby's stage antics are legendary for a reason!
8/27 – Portland, OR @ Dante’s
8/28 – San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel
8/29 – Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst
Pentagram w/ Electric Citizen, Satan’s Satyrs...
9/30 – Philadelphia, PA @ Underground Arts
10/01 – Providence, RI @ The Met
10/02 – Amityville, NY @ Revolution
10/03 – Washington, DC @ Rock N Roll Hotel
10/06 – New York, NY @ Saint Vitus
10/07 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr Smalls
10/09 – Chicago, IL @ The Abbey
10/10 – Grand Rapids, MI @ Pyramid Scheme
10/11 – Cleveland, OH @ Grog Shop
Kim Kelly is living in a virtual ram's head on Twitter - @grimkim