Crystal Fairy - Crystal Fairy
When two members of the Melvins, a member of At the Drive In and Teri Gender Bender decide to hook up and make a band you simply have to take notice. Crystal Fairy does not wait to introduce itself, nor give you a chance before they start pounding you over the head with sound. The record is bold, loud and fantastically artistic taking a genre more often than not which is just boiled down to it's noise and adding totally new and exciting elements. Tension is one of the tools that Crystal Fairy use incredibly well where a song like "Drugs on the Bus" has this driving Bass and thundering Drums that are so stationary anything played around them just fuels the tense fire. This was my first introduction to Teri Gender Bender, but my god is this woman a rock star. She is savage when needed, lays back when the song calls for it but whatever stance she takes her vocals always growl in just the right way. What makes this album really cool is that you could hear Teri's vocal on a more alternative rock type of song, and it wouldn't throw you, but when she sings ahead of tunes this heavy she really excels. There is nothing really hopeful or fun about this record, in fact for the most part it is quite disheartening. However you begin to understand that is the point: in a world where we all want to throw up our hands and scream "what in the actual fuck?!" Crystal Fairy are doing it for you, and giving you a soundtrack for when you are ready to clapback at a world in shambles.
Crystal Fairy though is not just about statements, because the record sounds absolutely incredibly. The balance of aggression and melody is so dialed it. One of the drawbacks of the record is because Teri Gender Bender is so incredibly good you sometimes miss the music behind her singing. It's no one's fault in particular it just shows how awesome she is that she can stand up to music that is this well done without being diminished what so ever. ONe of the more interesting things about the record is how isolating it can be. Because Teri Gender Bender has such a singular voice it almost feels like it is a conversation between you and her. It clearly is not, but that sense is a hard one to shake. Psychedelia makes an appearance on "Under Trouble" as disparate yells and a ticking guitar riff almost counts the time until it all falls apart. There is some kind of magic that brought these musicians together and it seems like that magic did not stop once the recording process began. For people to come together from such varied influences and experience and blend them all into something this unified, it's just incredible. Hopefully this is not the last we hear of Crystal Fairy, because god damn it is good.
8.8 out of 10