Thursday, June 20, 2024

King Buffalo spark on Regenerator

Regenerator is the third in King Buffalo’s ‘pandemic trilogy,’ following The Burden of Restlessness and Acheron. The trio of guitarist/vocalist Sean McVay, bassist/synthesist Dan Reynolds and drummer Scott Donaldson continue their journey of exploration of musical genres in a coherent and original way.

Best summed up from our previous review as “…so many elements that it needs a few listens to ‘get’… yes, heavy psyche, but also heavy rock, heavy prog and the odd hint of heavy grunge even, let’s just say, it’s heavy!” Well, I’m delighted to say that the new one is just as original, just as varied and just as heavy.

This seven-track album opens with the title track and, at nine and a half minutes long, it’s a great place to get to know this technical and proficient band. A gentle synth intro builds, via an excellent bass riff to clever melodic prog melodies with guitar and vocals both speaking volumes. The guitar initially has an irritating Edge but soon turns pure, phased and spectacular in the extended solo as it weaves its magic around the rhythm section. ‘Mercury’ is complex, gentle progginess, plus a heavy rock riff and a bass solo of serious ingenuity. ‘Hours’ ensures the light and shade are preserved with proggy punk sliced and diced with rock. ‘Mammoth’ lives up to its billing as the trio again manages to blur the genres as psyche and rock melodically combine to deliver a six-minute epic with an electrifying guitar solo to top it all off. Closer ‘Firmament’ brings folk rock into the psyche before heavy rock blossoms seamlessly with a Vol 4 intensity and another brilliant guitar solo.

Perhaps their best yet. It doesn’t just rely on weight; there are times of lightness and times of shade scattered across this varied and rewarding album.

Regenerator is out on the 2nd September on vinyl/CD via Stickman Records.

Tom Dixon
Tom Dixon
North East born, South West domiciled music lover - mainly heavy rock & blues but not averse to other genres. I'm fortunate to have retired early & I can now take full advantage of the 40+ years I have spent collecting, listening, watching & playing (badly) & have enjoyed researching how blues in particular has shaped the music we know & love today. Now if only I could get my Strat & Musicman to sound in reality how they do in my head!

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Regenerator is the third in King Buffalo’s ‘pandemic trilogy,’ following The Burden of Restlessness and Acheron. The trio of guitarist/vocalist Sean McVay, bassist/synthesist Dan Reynolds and drummer Scott Donaldson continue their journey of exploration of musical genres in a coherent and original way. Best summed...King Buffalo spark on Regenerator