Melvins
The Bride Screamed Murder


3.5
great

Review

by Ali CONTRIBUTOR (130 Reviews)
June 3rd, 2010 | 36 replies | 14,220 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Dual drummers, obscure humour, a sludgy Who cover. In other words, pretty much anything you could hope for in a Melvins album.

A quick browse through any list of ‘Most Influencial Artists’ is likely to contain more than a few familiar names, no matter what the source. In terms of metal, chances are you’ll see the likes of Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden and Metallica at – or near to – the top, with perhaps only the odd surprise inclusion. But while these artists are undoubtedly hugely influencial, and deserve the massive recognition they recieve, their inclusion on such lists often overlooks smaller, less popular artists, who have arguably been just as important in shaping modern heavy music. Bands such as Venom, Botch and Napalm Death exemplify these types of unsung heroes, and Seattle legends the Melvins are very much a part of this group.

The Washington bands’ claim to fame has long been their role in the creation of grunge – through one time roadie Kurt Cobain – but even before that they had made a huge contribution to genres such as doom and drone, not to mention the fact that they practically invented sludge as we know it. Remarkably, all of this was achieved within their first ten years, when they operated as a trio. Equally as improbable is the fact that their regular output has remained relatively consistent well into a third decade, despite countless altering musical directions and an ever changing line-up.

However, the ever revolving door in and out of the band seems, for now at least, to be on hold following the merging with Big Business in 2006. This has left the band – now a four-piece – in the unusual position of possessing two drummers, adding an extra element to their already delightfully unorthodox sound. The first record since the merge, 2006’s (A) Senile Animal was met with applause from both critics and fans, the same of which can be said for follow-up Nude With Boots, although for this reviewer at least that album was an inferior beast. Efficient as ever, this predecessor comes less than two years after that previous studio outing, and is sure to prove yet another fan-pleasing affair.

More energetic, heavy and innovative than its predecessor, The Bride Screamed Murder sees the quartet come up with a pretty solid balance between straight forward rock 'n' roll and the crazy experimentation that has characterised their entire career. Excellent opener The Water Glass is a prime example of this, opening with two minutes of enthralling sludgy riffing before a seamless transition into a chant dominated second half, which proves as unexpected as it is catchy. This early highlight also showcases the bands dual-drum attack, with the unorthodox beats and inventive fills instantly outshining those on Nude With Boots, where this distinguished feature was wasted, somewhat.

Thankfully, this excellent opening isn’t a false dawn, as the rest of the record generally sustains the same high standard. Standard (relatively speaking) rockers such as Evil New War God and Electric Flower fare well, fitting in nicely among the more experimental numbers. The band’s obscure sense of humour is also effectively showcased here, particularly on the sludgy cover of Who classic, My Generation, which is dragged out for nearly eight minutes to surprisingly impressive effect. However, the strongest moment here is also probably the most straightforward. At just over three minutes, Inhumanity And Death is the shortest song on the record, but packs a lot into it’s running time. A perfect exhibition of Melvins at their best, the song is a riff-fest throughout, with iconic axeman King Buzzo showing exactly why he’s considered such a cult-hero in some quarters.

Although not every track on The Bride Screamed Murder is quite so engaging as these highlights, the record as a whole is very solid, arguably the best they have produced in their current incarnation. Of course it isn’t as groundbreaking as the likes of Gluey Porch Treatments and Ozma were in the eighties, but importantly the quality is still largely there, and it will ensure that the band remain an inspiration to both current and future artists. The Melvins have made a career out of producing innovative, often challenging music, with little in the way of widespread recognition and fanfare, yet their output on the whole has remained of a good standard, and still promises much for the future. If this doesn’t qualify them as unsung heroes, then what does?

Recommended Tracks
Inhumanity And Death
The Water Glass
My Generation
Evil New War God



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user ratings (126)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 3rd 2010



7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is between a 3.5 and a 4.

eternium
June 3rd 2010



16304 Comments


Probably should have mentioned that it's only the bass position that kept being changed.
Great review. Sounds like I'll enjoy this once I get to listening to it. Of course, I love Melvins.

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 3rd 2010



7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks. If you like Melvins chances are you'll love this. Imo its the best they've released in quite a while.

shindip
June 3rd 2010



3536 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

i realallllllyyyy need to get this

Moraff
June 3rd 2010



30 Comments


good review, i've listened to this a couple times so far but it seems pretty good, way better than nude with boots

buckfutter
June 3rd 2010



2164 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review, great album. have a pos

iBosley
June 3rd 2010



268 Comments


want this baaaaaaaaad

Wizard
June 4th 2010



19240 Comments


Why is it that new Melvins material is criminally underrated? Good review.

Digging: Cloak of Altering - Plague Beasts

Dryden
June 4th 2010



12928 Comments


need to check this out

theilladelph
June 4th 2010



265 Comments


yea seeing them and isis on the 16th.... cant wait

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 4th 2010



7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks guys, and thanks for the feature.

accompliceofmydeath
June 4th 2010



4170 Comments


I think Bullhead came out in '91. Otherwise, great review. I haven't really heard anything since A Senile Animal so, I may want to check this out.

Photon
June 4th 2010



1292 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

need to listen to this and also the new Harvey Milk

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 4th 2010



7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I think Bullhead came out in '91. Otherwise, great review. I haven't really heard anything since A Senile Animal so, I may want to check this out.

Thanks, you're right, I always get Ozma and Bullhead confused for some reason.





iranscam
June 4th 2010



469 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Was kind of dreading listening to this given the last few Melvins releases have been kind of bad. Just listened to Evil New War God and thought it was fucking awesome.

iranscam
June 4th 2010



469 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Like this way more than Houdini but Houdini's probably my least favorite Melvins album.

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 4th 2010



7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

In my opinion this isn't as good as Houdini (which I have as a 4), but it's difficult to compare cos it's really different, the band has come a long way since 1993.

cinaedus
June 4th 2010



26298 Comments


sup guys

[img]http://i49.tinypic.com/6joz09.jpg[/img]

Digging: Anberlin - Lowborn

burton.and.gas
June 5th 2010



641 Comments


I literally just read the summary at first, and was like I'm going to have to buy this album.

tomatron
June 5th 2010



53 Comments


Melvins are sex. For more excellent double drummering, check their live 2006 performance in London with the Fantomas Melvins Big Band. Dale Crover + Dave Lombardo, my god, so sexy



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