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4.7 out of 5 stars
Clutch
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on March 15, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Clutch... if ever there was a band that had more going on thanmeets the eye, this is it. Their self-titled second album is anamazing piece of music. The songs flow into one another so artfully that at times you'll find yourself glancing at the CD box to see if this is some kind of wild concept album.
I'm still not sure that it isn't, but there are too many concepts at work here to be positive. Part X-Files, part pirate chanty, part Bible study, part Civil War history, part trucker's anthem and part English Lit class, "Clutch" rocks hard and grooves deep. "Big News" parts 1 and 2 are raucous, rollicking latter-day pirate tunes that start the record on a grooving, low-speed note. "Texan Book of the Dead" and "Escape From the Prison Planet" are two of my favorites, the former turning the concept of the codified death ritual on it's ear; the latter describing scenes that must have inspired Chris Carter to base some X-Files episodes.
"Spacegrass" is one of the best songs for driving at night... you can imagine yourself cruising at Escape Velocity out of the solar system. My absolute favorites are "I Have The Body Of John Wilkes Booth", "Animal Farm", "Droid" and "7 Jam".
This album took a few years to grow on me, but it is now one of my favorites. It's different, original, enjoyable, thought-provoking and a-kicking. It proves that rock, far from being dead, has simply become the tool for more sophisticated musicians.
Worth it. END
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2000
Format: Audio CD
There's no way to describe how good Clutch is. Personally, I like this CD better than all the others. In fact, this is the best CD I've heard. It is simply awesome. The more you listen to it the more you like it. The more you hear it the more you love it until you eventually can't listen to anything else. I have Pitchfork, Impetus, Transnational Speedway League, Elephant Riders, and Jam Room as well, but I keep finding myself listening to Clutch over and over again. It's like a concept album in that when you just play it from start to finish the songs flow into each other and feed off of the previous vibe. From Big News 1 to Tim Sult Vs. the Greys, this CD has it all. EVERY SONG gets 5 stars with no weak points and no complaints from me. Do yourself a favor and buy this CD! Once you listen to it a few times you'll be extremely glad you did, I gaurantee it. Oh yea..don't forget to vist pro-rock.com and clutchgear.net for the latest Clutch news and merchandise info!
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on August 3, 2002
Format: Audio CD
For those who think music can't be simultaneously heavy, catchy, and intelligent, the work of Clutch should serve as a thudding refutation. When it comes to Clutch, you can basically just take everything you know about heavy music and throw it out the window, because they bend genres more easily than Superman could bend a fork. Is it metal? Hard rock? Jam Rock? Stoner Rock? More like "E," all of the above.
What makes this self-titled second album lovable and durable above all is its extreme quirkiness. Every song stands out on its own, making for a collection of memorable tunes. "Big News I" boasts a deep bass groove and some hilariously inane lyrics, while its sequel "Big News II" and "Animal Farm" turn on the heaviness. "I Have the Body of John Wilkes Booth" and "Tight Like That" are solid slow-burning Jams, and "Spacegrass" is a soaring, multi-faceted epic. I could talk about every song, but suffice to that the variety on display here is truly impressive.
On top of the songwriting, there's a lot more to like about this band. Neil Fallon has quickly earned a place among my favorite vocalists. Sometimes he sings, sometimes he wails, sometimes he growls, but he always sounds like he's been gargling with gravel. Tim Sult is a terffic and versatile guitarist, who cranks out lots of thick, heavy riffs and insinuating lead lines. Meanwhile, the rhythm section of Dan Maines and Jean-Paul Gaster keeps up an infectious power groove in the background.
I don't think this is Clutch's best album, as I think they've been improving with the subsequent releases "The Elephant Riders" and "Pure Rock Fury." Still, the self-titled album and its predecessor "Transnational Speedway League" are still a good place to start. I like all kinds of heavy music, from classic metal right up to death metal (and beyond), but Clutch will always occupy a prominent place in my CD collection. If you like your metal mixed with some intelligence, you can't go wrong with Clutch.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on March 7, 2006
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
These guys are crazy. Neil Fallon's voice has more attitude than Mike Tyson on the wrong medication, and the rest of the package will have you cracking open a cold beer and banging your head until it gathers enough speed to launch off your body, through your roof and into outer space with beer drool hanging off your lower lip ... and what a beautiful smile Clutch has put on your face. Anyone into hard, heavy, sleazy, sludgey, insane hard rock/metal bands, needs Clutch in their collection the way Whitney Houston needs weed.

All Hail Clutch!

Necrosoul.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on June 16, 2006
Format: Audio CD
If you are only going to buy one album from Clutch, or modern rock for that matter, you have to pick this one up. Clutch stuff ingenious lyrics, grooving basslines, perfectly excecuted drums, and guitar riffs that sound like they came straight from the Seventies into one big bag and hardly charge you anything for it.(I got my copy of this record, and all their others with the exception of robot hive and blast tyrant for $9.00 Canadian)

You dont see many bands like Clutch around anymore. What do i mean? Well Clutch have been making consistantly great records for years, and refuse to follow any sort of trend. In case you didn't notice, were not in the Seventies, so the whole trippy guitar playing style has been shoved out the window and has been replaced with the SAME chord played over and over again. And guess what? The lyrics don't follow the usual Rock pattern of Sex, Drugs & Rock and Roll cliched pattern. Neil Fallon is one of my favorite songwritters because he has such a unique way of crafting lyrics that somehow match perfectly with the music.

Check out Clutch if your into rock in general, or you just like original music.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2000
Format: Audio CD
this album should be up there with back in black and led zeppelin IV. no one has ever put classic rock music to a thunderous yell. its such a breath of fresh air from other records. your first clutch purchase should begin here, then pick up the elephant riders and impetus. if you already like clutch...look into the CKY "camp" album and karma to burn's debut on roadrunner records. you'll thank me
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on August 7, 2000
Format: Audio CD
What is Clutch? A tent meeting crossed with a heavy metal concert crossed with a sci-fi convention. A poetry slam in a New Orleans swamp with the volume turned up to 11. The music playing in a psychotic homeless man's head as he screams for his mother ship to take him home.
In other words, it's a stone trip. You can tell from the opening track, the sea chanty/dirge/funk tune "Bad news part one," that you're in for something special. The bass slithers, drums pound, guitars crunch, and the vocals build from a cool rasp to a howl.
The high energy and intelligent, twisted lyrics continue on dynamite tracks like the wryly sarcastic "Texan Book of the Dead," the tent-meeting fervor of "Tight Like That," the paranoid rantings of "Prison Planet" and "Animal Farm," and the blissed-out cool of "Spacegrass."
The lead singer has a tendency toward a rough, almost atonal shout -- normally I find that vocal style obnoxious, but here it works. The only criticism I have is that the songs that aren't highlights are same-sounding and bleed into each other. Still, if you're smarter than the average bear but still like to bang your head, this is the album for you.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 2, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Clutch SHOULD be played everyday 34 times on the radio. Clutch SHOULD be more widely known. Clutch SHOULD be on the covers of music magazines everywhere. But they're not. Which is all the more reason to check this band out, because they live up to the hype when there is no hype.

Neil Fallon has to be one of the greatest unknown Rock vocalists in the world. His vocal talents, for this type of genre, are amazing. Like a review i read, the reviewer said something along the lines of..he grunts, growls, wails, shouts, whispers and screams.. It's all true. In the videoclips for songs like "Pure Rock Fury" and "Soapmakers", you see him performing Live. And he's energetic, funny, and most of all..fun. And reading the lyrics, and hearing the rhymes, (Like on the song "Texan Book of the Dead"..) you can't help but have a smile on your face. Clutch are the grooviest, most fun band i know of.

It's a shame in a way, that they aren't more popular. They're more of a 'cult'-band, if you like, it seems. But on the other hand, that's great for the fans as long as they have enough money to keep making Albums and playing Live. And to see them Live would certainly be an experience to remember, i think.

This Album is one of their best. Every Album just seems to top the previous one though. Songs like "Big News 1", "Big News 2", "Rock & Roll Outlaw", "Texan Book Of The Dead" (With it's Chorus - "Ooeeooahahtwingtwangwallawallabingbang, Ooeeooahah B-I-N-G-O, Ooeeooahah E-I-E-I-O..(Which i'm sure you really needed to know)..), "Escape From The Prison Planet", "Spacegrass", "Animal Farm", "7 Jam" and the stunning finisher "Tim Sult Vs The Greys" are all infectiously groovy and extremely catchy songs.

Songs like "I Have The Body Of John Wilkes Booth", "Tight Like That", "Droid" and "The House That Peterbilt" are probably the slowest songs on this CD, along with "Spacegrass". They sound moody and heavy, and they create a good balance between songs towards the end. The last song "Tim Sult Vs The Greys" leads on immediately from "7 Jam", as they run into eachother much like "Big News 1" and "Big News 2" do at the start of the Album. It's a fantastic finisher that actually doesn't have any vocals. It's got the sort of groovy tune that will be stuck in your head for hours after listening to it.

Overall, this Album is highly recommended for fans of Rock music, casual or diehards, in which i think you'll love this CD and this truly great and unique Band.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is the quintessential album for any hard rock music fan. If you aren't familiar with Clutch, you should acquaint yourself quickly. One of the hardest working bands in the business, Clutch performs around 100 shows per year...and has been doing it for over a decade. In any given week of touring, Clutch will play a different city every night, usually playing anywhere from 2-4 states per week. The reluctant studio artists, they can only be truly appreciated live. Their stage show simply rocks, and they pour their hearts out in each jam. I'm lucky enough that they travel through Austin, Texas at least 2-3 times per year, playing sold out shows every single time. The last show I saw was packed solid, with only Clutch on the bill, no other bands. They played not one but THREE sets that night, and it was simply amazing. Chances are, Clutch will play in a town near you at some point during the year. Do yourself a favor & get your booty to the show...you won't regret it.

This album has always been considered the ultimate Clutch album, the staple by which all other albums are judged. However, their latest album, Blast Tyrant, is quickly making a name for itself with both critics and fans alike. (For more on Blast Tyrant, go to hyfntrak.com/clutch/AFF2434/) Yet their self-titled album remains the sentimental favorite which fans can stick in the CD player and let it ride from beginning to end. There are few CDs that are capable of that, and even fewer you can honestly say sound better live on-stage in all their gritty glory than they do with polished CD sound production.

Many have tried to describe both Clutch's music as well as Neil Fallon's vocal stylings, failing miserably on both counts. This is simply because Clutch is so unique, it's difficult to pigeonhole them by branding them with a label or trying to equate their sound to some other band. It's just not possible so I won't even try it; instead I'll let the music speak for itself. There are so many hooks in their songs, you'll find it difficult to not sing along or tap your foot as you listen, (or play a little air guitar, if that's your thing). Clutch is definitely a hard, jam band. If you are looking for emotionally driven lyrics & cry-me-a-river music, then just move right along, there is nothing to see here.

It's difficult to list all my favorites off this album, or else I'd just end up listing every track on the CD pretty much. Each song builds off the one before while still maintaining it's own unique style and lyrics. It's f--king cathartic!

*Note: Regarding the reviewer who just didn't understand, I find any review of Clutch containing referrences to Justin Timberlake, Poison, Creed, & Mike Patton as being suspect. For the record, Neil Fallon sings vocals for Clutch. Faith No More/Mr. Bungle alumni Mike Patton has nothing to do with Clutch. Unfortunately, the self-professed "huge Mike Patton fan" is not privy to this fact. The only album Mike Patton appears on with any member of Clutch (lead singer Neil Fallon, as luck would have it) is "Rise Above", the Henry Rollins project benefitting the West Memphis 3.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on February 12, 2002
Format: Audio CD
After I listened to this album for the first time, I became addicted to Clutch. That was about 6 years ago and I still can't get enough. This album is in a class all its own. From start to finish, this is perfection.
The first time I listened to it, I was in my car. I found myself laughing out loud, smiling, shaking my head in disbelief that someone could make music this good, and driving to the nearest record store to get more Clutch.
The first two tracks, Big News I & II, set the mood for the record perfectly. You WILL bob your head to that opening bass line. I guanrantee it. From there on you'll experience the lyrical equivalent to a really good season of the X-files. The imagery is so rich, every song tells a story. I love everything about this album. It rocks hard. It is intelligent. It is incredible. It redefines cool. If you've never heard these guys before, buy this album. I promise it won't be the last Clutch record you buy!
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