If you’ve followed the trajectory of ÆGES then you’d know that they’ve become so much more than that band that featured that guy from Pelican that one time (Their debut, The Bridge, featured Pelican skinsman Larry Herweg in their ranks). And if you haven’t followed their trajectory then you know that, to put it plainly, ÆGES just rawk!
But I digress.
I have this spiel for January albums that dissects the good and the bad reasons to release new music so early in any new year but at the end of the day someone has to do it, right? If you’re a band as sonically diverse and all around as altmazing (“Alternative” and “Amazing”, get it?) as ÆGES already is then the only people who should be concerned when you put out new music is your competitors.
“DRIFTER” is a flurry of fuzzed out riffs and how you start off an album right! Those rawk and/or roll fans yearning the heyday of Queens of the Stone Age (Songs For The Deaf through Era Vulgaris especially) should take notice of ÆGES’ sonic sojourn on their latest album. Elsewhere, “PAIN” is fierce. Seemingly. While the barrage of riffs and percussion is in your face, the contrast of Kemble Walters’ croon provides another side to this pummeler. Same goes for “BLIND & DREAMING” which is sullen with Tony Baumeister’s bass laying it on as thick as molasses while guitars shriek to tell another story.
“BELIEVER” is a burgeoning riff factory that builds not only a walll of Walters’ and Trevor Howard’s guitar tones but also this blissful aural oasis that is so intricate, so nice on the ears as these acoustic guitar flourishes stand out amidst the heavier accented attacks. Further within, “DREAMSTATE” is just a full blown, full on RAWK anthem with scorching riffs and a piledriving percussive performance from Dylan Howard.
Inevitably this thing had to end, yeah? So it’s fitting that “A ROOM FULL OF MIRRORS”, the track that closes DRØMMEN, happens to also be the best at covering all the ÆGES bases. You get Walters’ screeches and these delightful call and response verses leading toward the biggest chorus ÆGES has laid to tape yet…and did I mention the massive riffage already? Because if I didn’t, I need to mention how ridiculously HUGE it is. As huge as Baumeister’s rumbling bass tones and Howard’s belligerent bashing. This is possibly the most perfect Rawk record of 2020 and, by the time it comes out we’ll only be 24 days into the new year. Think about that shit for a minute.