Venturing still, the Meat Puppets fourth full-length album “Mirage” provides the staple sound of the band with consistently genre bending music. A bit more listenable than its predeceasing efforts, “Mirage” cleans up the vocals a bit, but the raw nature of the Meat Puppets remains intact as gritty punk meets folk and psychedelia to present a sound that is not only original but out-and-out applaudable. Highlighting Curt Kirkwood’s impressive guitar playing, “The Wind and the Rain” features classical guitar while “Liquified” rages with fuzz-filled distorted power chords. Even light synthesizers bring out a “Strawberry Fields Forever” feel to the slow-tempo “Love Our Children Forever”. Where as most bands fizzle out by this time, “Mirage” features, arguably, some of the bands best material, for instance “The Mighty Zero” and “A Hundred Miles”, which puts any song off of “Meat Puppets II” to the test.
Every song is great, from the downright ridiculous to the thought-provoking. Although it may take a few listens to sink in, the Meat Puppets strike an impressive chord with “Mirage”. For any casual fan of the band, this album is definitely something to check out. A re-issue of “Mirage” includes five instrumental bonus tracks, the first three being early versions of songs featured on the album, the fourth being a cover of a Presley movie score titled “Rubberneckin’”, and the last of which being a Curt Kirkwood solo track titled “Grand Intro”.
Meat Puppets (1987)
Curt Kirkwood - Guitar, Vocals
Cris Kirkwood - Bass, Vocals
Derrick Bostrom - Drums