King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard – Nonagon Infinity

KGNI

Holy crap.

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard have come to “fuck shit up” (as they put it) on their new record – Nonagon Infinity.

The band (Ambrose Kenny Smith – harmonica, vocals, synths, Cook Craig – guitars and bass, Eric Moore – drums, percussion, theremin, Joey Walker – guitar and vocals, Lucas Skinner – bass, Michael Cavanaugh – drums, Stu Mackenzie – guitar, vocals, flute) is wildly prolific and able to switch musical styles faster than a chameleon changes colors.  Their last album, Paper Mache Dream Balloon, is a lovely bit of psychedelic hippy pop music with some rock and blues touches.

Nonagon Infinity, however, is the most blistering rock record I’ve heard in a long while.  “Robot Stop” explodes from the opening seconds like a land mine hit by a tank.  Each track flows seamlessly into the next.  This happens so well that the album loops on itself by the end.  I’ve read interviews with the band in which they had planned this all along.  The album can be listened to on loop without any noticeable bumps in the road.  In fact, you could start Nonagon Infinity on any of the nine tracks and it would still loop itself without stumbling.  It’s an incredible piece of audio engineering.

“Big Fig Wasp” emerges from “Robot Stop” like a train emerging from a tunnel.  Everything is layered in wall-flattening guitars, double drumming, and slightly distorted vocals before launching into “Gamma Knife” like a rocket leaving Cape Canaveral.  The harmonica on “Gamma Knife” is the booster on that rocket, taking the song out of orbit.  “People Vultures” follows it, with lyrics about rampant consumerism and a heavy Jethro Tull feel.

“Mr. Beat” has a great trippy groove before “Evil Death Roll” comes in with heavy reverb on the guitars and a cool mix of stoner rock and psychedelia.  “Invisible Face” sounds like they recorded it while diving 80mph down a dark desert road.  “Wah Wah” refers to both the guitar effects and the near mystical chant lyrics as it builds to mind-blowing intensity.  It melts your brain into the closer (or is it the opener?) – “Road Train,” which might crush any sanity you have left by this point.

As stunning as Nonagon Infinity is, I’m sure it is even better live, so don’t miss them on their current tour.  You won’t regret it, or buying this record.

Keep your mind open.

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Nik Havert

I've been a music fan since my parents gave me a record player for Christmas when I was still in grade school. The first record I remember owning was "Sesame Street Disco." I've been a professional writer since 2004, but writing long before that. My first published work was in a middle school literary magazine and was a story about a zoo in which the animals could talk.

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