Text: Lucas Rebreyend
One last one for the road! It’s with a third album that King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard closes this year of releases, which will have been tested on the American stages that the band has been setting on fire for a few months now. The watchword is still improvisation, even if this Changes stands out from its predecessors by a simple concept: the “D-F#” pattern that keeps coming back to feed the melodies. Simple… almost simplistic?
“We wanted to see how far we could go with this idea: a change of chord and key between D major and F# major… In the end, it sounded so good that we went ahead with the idea, and made an album out of it… An album that is one single song, it’s a cycle. Thank you Stu, back to you in the studio. So the idea is set, and the title track is a proof of it from the start, with this constant oscillation between two chords, but I fear that the formula doesn’t take as effectively as in Nonagon Infinity (2016), whose eternal and bold loop took us away without any care. There is a lounge and repentant perfume in the air here that struggles to get the tushies off… afterwards, “Hate Dancin” lifts it up again and can be swayed quite nicely, of course, but I’m already sulky. A few tracks get out of this double chord logic… without really bringing any surprises. Even the gentle krautrock of “Gondii” doesn’t manage to create the infernal magic that takes me to each of their albums, and the somniferous “Exploding Suns” completes my conclusion: this album is not accomplished, and I can’t support my opinion any further after now many listenings.
All things considered, of course, the musical mastery is at its best. Between impressive guitar solos and synthetic experimentations, there’s plenty to eat and drink, and for dessert, this incredible drummer, Mickey Cavanagh, who clearly bursts the screen – sorry, the speakers – and clearly establishes himself as one of the most gifted percussionists of his generation.
In spite of everything, I am afraid that I am holding before me a clearly disappointing half-tone opus. After more than twenty albums over ten years, a first disappointment is more than acceptable, so it is without any rancour that I close this year’s triplet. I’d like to salute the Australian buddies and their unquenchable creative thirst, and I’d like to urge you, the reader, to check out the myriad of bootlegs available on the internet in order to attest to the obvious: this is one of the best live bands that we can witness today. WOO!