Caustic Resin

(Copyright © 1999-2024 Piero Scaruffi | Terms of use )
Body Love Body Hate (1993), 7/10
Fly Me To The Moon (1995), 6.5/10
The Medicine Is All Gone (1998) , 6.5/10
Trick Question (1999) , 5/10
The After Birth , 6/10
Keep On Truckin (2003), 5/10

Caustic Resin were one of the innovative bands to come out of Idaho during the Seattle boom of the 1990s. Led by singer and guitarist Brett Netson, Caustic Resin played a raw, punchy, abrasive, psychedelic brand of garage-rock.

Their debut album, Body Love Body Hate (C/Z, 1993), explored the history of hard psychedelic rock with multiple references to the 1960s: the acid raga Drone is reminiscent of both the Doors and early Pink Floyd, while echoes of Blue Cheer and Guess Who surface from the smoking and roaring garage-rock of Chainsaw. The somnolent seven-minute psychedelic blues All Filling sounds like a noisy remix of the Shondells's Crimson And Clover and the nine-minute Spinedog-Re drowns a catchy melody in excoriating jamming that merges Cream and Jimi Hendrix and gets wilder and wilder. Bassist Tom Romich and drummer James Manny provide adequate backing for Netson's visceral rants. It helps that the album sounds like it was recording in a sewer, with guitars drenched in sewage.

Starting in 1994, Netson also played bass for Built To Spill.

Thanks to a more professional sound Fly Me To The Moon (C/Z, 1995) showed more rhythmic strength and more cohesive guitar work while taming their combination of acid-rock and grunge with poppier melodies, especially in Spore and Alien Fugue, sometimes losing the entire power of their sound (like in the moronic Golden Hours). At best, this "softer" sound evokes a more psychedelic Neil Young, like in Kill You If You Want Me To. They still have the explosive force of the debut, and show it in the garage-rock Cancerous Eyes. The seven-minute Damaged Animal is a drunk cakewalk for four minutes before soaring in a fiery rave-up. Brett Netson's guitar work shines in the unbridled psychedelic mayhems of Healing Cough and Calling Off the Dogs (possibly the standout). The incendiary eight-minute tour de force of Station Wagon matches between a Rolling Stones-ian rhythm and a Dinosaur Jr-esque guitar crescendo. However, the album contains more filler than the debut, and rarely matches the same degree of savagery.

The Medicine Is All Gone (Alias, 1998) is the howl of an isolated soul. Netson's smoking guitar is now the equivalent of a gospel singer. A powerful Neil Young-grade angst detonates Cable, that sets the martial, sorrowful pace for the rest of the album, all the way to the closer Enough that is pure guitar noise strafe. The depression's nadir is reached in the agonizing blues Your Lie.
A pathetic melody lifts Niacin, almost a sendup of David Bowie's Space Oddity in a maelstrom of distortions. The mellower, melodic side surfaces also in Once And Only and in the epic country ballad Man From Michigan But a hypnotic slumber seems to envelop every sweet moment.
What doesn't work are the numerous imitations of early Pink Floyd. Hold Your Head Up is a cover of an old Argent song.

The material on Trick Question (Alias, 1999) is underwhelming. The songs are either unfocused (Eventhings), repetitive (the seven-minute Unlucky) or uninspired (California). An excess of psychedelic dilation leaves Taste lifeless, and even the nine-minute Torture Yourself is overlong and not quite a fuzz-fest worthy of its predecessors.

The After Birth (Alias, 2000) marks a return to the rawer, bluesier sound of Fly Me To The Moon with the likes of Violent Game. It is "searching" music, at the same time meditative and neurotic, exploring disturbed states of mind with inquisitive vocals that sound like a psychologist's report and feverish guitars that sound like patients in pain. Longdrive Jam and Creedence Jam display the band's talent at best, but the more propulsive Violent Game and Rotten Man generate more combustion.

Their career ended with the mediocre Keep On Truckin' (2003). The catchiest melody surfaces in Wizard of the Upper Snake River, but soon buried in a distorted guitar inferno. On the other hand, the ten-minute Keep on Truckin repeats a tedious litany and indulges in pointless noisy jamming. Drive #47 is a modest slab of stoner-rock. The country lament Fry Like Ace Jones, a cross of the Rolling Stones and Neil Young, is perhaps the most interesting song here.

Netson had already formed the Suffocation Keep, which recorded John Hughes Was Never So Wrong (2002) and A Few Minor Modifications of the Stars (2004). He later joined the Sleepy Seeds.

(Translation by/ Tradotto da Margherita)

Caustic Resin e’ stata una delle bands innovatrici  che emerse dall'Idaho durante il boom di Seattle degli anni 90. Condotti dal cantante/chitarrista Brett Netson, i Caustic Resin suonavano una sorta di folk-rock grezzo, energico, abrasivo, con accenti Neil Young-iani, leggermente psichedelico. Il loro debut album, Body Love Body Hate (C/Z, 1993), dava l'impressione di essere atterrato passando tra i Meat Puppets e i Dinosaur Jr. Il bassista Tom Romich e il batterista James Manny fornivano un adeguato sostegno agli incubi di Netson.
Fly Me To The Moon (C/Z, 1995) rivelava piu’ intensita’ ritmica e un escoriante impiego della chitarra. Cancerous Eyes e Damaged Animal sono esemplari della narrazione amara e sconvolta di Netson. Una band ancora piu’ ambiziosa appare nel tour de force psichedelico Healing Cough.
The Medicine Is All Gone (Alias, 1998) e’ il grido di un animo solitario. La  chitarra fumante di Netson ora e’ l'equivalente di una cantante gospel . Una potente rabbia, sul genere di Neil Young, fa esplodere Cable, che stabilisce l'andamento marziale e addolorato del resto dell'album, lungo tutto il tragitto fino alla piu’ compatta Enough, una mitragliata di puro rumore chitarristico. Il nadir della depressione viene raggiunto nell'agonizzante blues di Your Lie. Una melodia toccante solleva Niacin, quasi un'emissione di Space Oddity di Bowie in un vortice di distorsioni. Il lato piu’ mordido e melodico affiora anche in Once And Only e nell'epica ballata country Man From Michigan. Ma un ipnotico torpore sembra avvolgersi attorno ad ogni momento di dolcezza.
Quel che proprio non va sono le innumerevoli imitazioni dei primi Pink Floyd.
Trick Question (Alias, 1999) ha come protagonista  D.E., di nove minuti.

The After Birth (Alias, 2000) segna un ritorno al suono piu’ rude e blues di Fly Me To The Moon, in cui il pezzo migliore e’ Violent Game. E'una musica indagatrice, al tempo stesso meditativa e nevrotica, che esplora stati mentali turbati tramite un suono vocale inquisitore che sembra la relazione di uno psicologo e chitarre febbricitanti che sembrano le voci dei malati sofferenti. Longdrive Jam e Creedence Jam mostrano nel modo migliore il talento della band, ma le piu’ propulsive Violent Game e Rotten Man provocano piu’ trambusto