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Monday, January 18, 2010

Album Of The Week-"Sonoluminescence"-Luder (2009)

The Album Of The Week this week is "Sonoluminescence" by Small Stone recording artists Luder.


The formation of Luder harkens back to 2006, when Small Stone Records undertook the task of issuing the lost recordings of a band called Slot after the untimely passing of its founding member and guitarist, Billy Rivkin. After the successful completion of this project, it was decided by the powers that be that some semblance of the band should play at SXSW the following spring. So it was that Sue Lott (Slot's bassist) and Eddie Alterman (Slot's drummer) were joined on guitars by Phil Dürr (Big Chief, Giant Brain, Five Horse Johnson) and Small Stone head-honcho Scott Hamilton to pull off such a thing. The thinking was that it would take two guitar players to competently do what Billy did on his own. (read more...)


"90's indie rock casualty Slot had a brief career resurgence when Small Stone released their The Sweet Black Bear a couple of years ago. Problem is, it's hard to capitalize on an album when there's no band to back it up, so surviving members Sue Lott (bass, vocals) and Eddie Alterman (drums) – guitarist Billy Rivkin's death was the unfortunate impetus for The Sweet Black Bear's release – teamed up with Big Chief/Five Horse Johnson guitarist Phil Durr and Small Stone's Scott Hamilton (guitar, presumably check writing) for a South by Southwest gig.

Apparently things went well enough to breathe new life into the band. But rather than carrying on under the same name, they opted to rechristen themselves Luder, in deference to the departed (take that, Alice in Chains!). It's a smart move, and not just because Alterman left shortly thereafter (drums are now courtesy of Novadriver's Eric Miller). Even though the two share the same sonic head space, Luder is still distinct enough to be its own entity.

Basically, Sonoluminescence's ten tracks take Slot's ethereal drug-rock and dirties it up. If Slot leaned more towards dreamy, pop-like melodies, Luder nudges them closer to the hesher crowd. We're not talking High on Fire territory, but nevertheless Sonoluminescence has more drive, more immediacy to it. That's most apparent in the likes of opener “Sing to Me,” “S-Words,” “Selfish and Dumb,” and “Sewn Together,” but even the more lower key numbers - “Hot, Girl-on-Girl, Vampire Action,” “The Pox,” and “Soledad y Onanismo” - chug along with consistency. In spite of that, the songs are smartly put together. Given the various ways the members approach rock music (alt, blues, stoner, fussy label head, etc), it's not surprising that Luder never really takes the easy or obvious route.

A couple of songs get a little too precocious - “In Love with Love” in particular – but overall I liked Sonoluminescence more than The Sweet Black Bear. If Slot was geared more towards the indie scene of the mid to late 90s, Luder strikes me as being as agreeable to fans of Acid King as it would be to fans of Concrete Blonde. " (John Pegoraro, StonerRock.com)

More reviews

Track Listing:

01. Sing to Me
02. S-Words
03. Selfish and Dumb
04. Cold Hands, Warm Pants
05. Hot, Girl-on-Girl, Vampire Action
06. In Love with Love
07. The Pox
08. Points West
09. Sewn Together
10. Soledad y Onanismo


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