The masters of heavy, groovy blues rock are back with a follow-up to their 2015 album “Psychic Warfare”, this time with a heavier sound. Clearly, I’m talking about Clutch and their “Book of bad decisions”.
If this is the first time you’ve ever heard of Clutch, then let me explain what we are dealing with here. It’s heavy guitar riffs, gritty but still melodious vocals, groovy basslines and pounding drums all wrapped in a heavy blues blanket.
The album starts with a real kicker in “Gimme the keys”; a song more rooted in hard rock than blues and vocalist Neil Fallon sounds angrier than I’ve heard him in a long time. Next up is “Spirit of ´76” and as soon as the intro begins my head starts banging, when the chorus kicks in I know this track will be a real crowd pleaser on their upcoming tours for years to come.
“In walks barbarella” truly stands out on “Book of bad decision”. With the brass section a certain soul-vibe is added and it could easily be the next James Bond theme song. I can’t help thinking, what would the album sound like had it been with brass on all songs? Next album maybe? Clutch music has followed me on many road trips and this album is no exception. The song “A good fire” makes me want to get in my car and go cruising with the windows down. Last song on the album “Lorelei” stands out in the sense that it is the closest thing this album has to a ballad even though It’s not a ballad at all. A sad slow intro in minor key which builds to a heavy chorus where Neil Fallon shows his full range as a singer and it is the perfect song to end this album. As the song fades away, one is left longing for more.
Clutch is, and has always been, the kind of band that has their own unique style; no matter what they do or add to their sound the essence of their music is always present. And this goes for “Book of bad decisions” as well; clutch delivers a solid hard rock album with their trademark sound of heavy groovy riffs and never fading presence of blues. For all those who like the heavier side of Clutch this album will fit perfectly next to “Blast Tyrant” and “Psychic Warfare”.
Title: Book of bad decisions
Date of release: 2018-09-07
Stand out track: In walks Barbarella