Oblivion Hunter

Lightning Bolt

Oblivion Hunter

Since drummer Brian Chippendale of the noise-and-rhythm duo Lightning Bolt usually "sings" with a mic in his mouth, rendering any possible lyrics indecipherable, Lightning Bolt is really all about the music. Chippendale's musical partner, Brian Gibson, doesn't so much play the bass as he mutates and manipulates it, using sheer force to coax out a kind of bruised aural beauty. Oblivion Hunter features studio tapes "lost" since 2008 and shows the band exploring and pumping up for 2009's Earthly Delights. Among the rough mixes of brawny sparring matches and sprawling jams (one track is 13 minutes long), tracks like the roiling "King Candy" or the surprisingly melodic "Fly F***** Fly" stand out. "Soft Spoken Spectre" is a gorgeous break in the cacophony, with Gibson's bass turning out a spare and sparkling 72 seconds of fanciful, Eastern-inflected beauty. The tumultuous "World Wobbly Ride" might test even a true fan's patience, with the duo indulging in a very loose jam that at times feels a bit like they forgot the tape was still rolling. Playful and mostly satisfying, Oblivion Hunter will undoubtedly delight some and mystify others.

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