Pretty Lightning – Jangle Bowls

Rating: ★★★½☆

In these weird times we’re living in, it seems like a perfect moment to get some album reviews up since we are major slackers in that category. It makes it east to motivate for a review when a band is kind enough to go out of their way to send us a physical copy of their release. We are hoarders people! My new pals in the German based band Pretty Lightning sent me their new album Jangle Bowls and I’m going to offer my thoughts on it after the jump. Remember, that I’ve stopped traditional reviews and tend to offer a more creative take on opinion pieces.

Background

Pretty Lightning is the Saarbrucken, Germany based two man band consisting of pals Christian Berghoff and Sebastian Haas.

Quick Hits

  • Opening track “Swamp Ritual” is a bit slow and sludgy, but things really get kicked up a notch with title track “Jangle Bowls”.
  • Only a few songs in and this album totally offers all of the elements I used to love about the early days of The Black Keys before they sort of sold out and went to a more polished sound.
  • Crazy to think that a European band can create these super fuzzy, foot stomping, southern inspired sounds. Almost reminds me of a bunch of Canadians in The Band making some of the most famous and legendary American/southern music.
  • Some of the slower, psych elements really offer a nice juxtaposition with the heavier, blues tracks. Keeps the listener engaged throughout the album.

Now Show Me

Who is This For?

Anyone looking for a sludgy, southern inspired blues album with a psych rock inspiration.

Song/Single Links

“Jangle Bowls” – One of the more accessible songs of the album with the slightest hint of pop inspiration surrounded by the blues rock/psych sound.

Voo Doo Boo” – A real highlight on the album for me as it mixes all the elements that make this band great. Slower psych number, but then progresses into some really dirty, muddy blues.

“Hum” – One of the more fast paced, blues dance hall tunes on the album. This one does not mess around.

Summary

This album was a welcome change of sounds for me as we are typically inundated with tons of shoegaze, indie, dream pop, or other similar sounds. It’s 100% refreshing to listen to a band who know how to crank out some slamming drums, heavy rhythms and distorted guitars. This album can at times lull you into a bit of a trance with the slower, psych numbers, but then blast you out of your chair and onto your feet with the heavier, bluesy tracks. It can offer you a lot, and is sure to take you on a wild ride to rural Germany and back down the MIssissippi.

Jangle Bowls is currently available for purchase in a variety of formats via the group’s bandcamp page. You can also stream the entire album there.

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