To put it simply, the boys from Germantown have done it again. While scores of bands come and go and struggle to release more than one good album Clutch, like wine, is just getting better album after album and it goes without saying that another year sees another Clutch album sitting on the Essential Listening list.

Clutch has been doing this music thing for some 18 years now and over time they’ve found a groove that works for them. Largely, Clutch fans fall into 2 categories, fans of Pure Rock Fury and backwards and fans of Blast Tyrant and forward. I am of the latter camp. The first time I heard Strange Cousins I was a little taken aback. It just didn’t seem to have the same flow as the past few albums…a little more metal and less blues. I was afraid they’d fouled one off the third base line (which they’ve earned the right to do). Turns out, all I needed to do was settle in and get to know this album a little better.

Strange Cousins does possess everything that’s made their Blast Tyrant and forward career so awesome but it also contains a little of the pre-Blast feel to it. Enough to maybe even make a believer out of folks that have since tuned the band out?

Clutch – Struck Down
Clutch – Minotaur

Clutch’s Official Site, Clutch on myspace, Buy Strange Cousins From The West


  1. I fall in to a different group I like everything before Pure Rock Fury, and everything after it. PRF is the one clunker in their discography IMHO.

  2. i’m still in the “getting to know” stage, but one thing that was immediately impressive about this album was the packaging – the artwork, design, everything is absolutely incredible! that alone makes it worth buying.

  3. I’ll give it another go, though I’ve pretty much given up on them.

    And I’ll agree with the above poster, Pure Rock Fury is its own kind of awful. And while I don’t appreciate the stuff after that, I don’t think it’s *bad*.

    It doesn’t get any better than Juggernaut and Walking in the Great Shining Path of Monster Trucks though.

  4. I’m a Marylander and have listened to this band for 14 years. I’m also (usually) of the anything-that-Clutch-puts-out-fucking-rocks-camp. Maybe I was just a dilettante in that regard…

    This album surprised me a bit — it came off as a bit flat in sound. Maybe the rip of it that was passed on to me was bad — I’m going to go buy the actual album tonight so I can hear it pump through my stereo as the Clutch-gods intended. Quite perceptive, also about the combo of pre-BT stoner metal and post-BT blues. I really dig the masterful blend.

    As far as Pure Rock Fury or any other album goes — see them live; you will be scarred for life in the best possible, Clutchy way, but you won’t be bitching about how shitty their early or later stuff sounds. Sometimes, you just gotta live and not pick nits.

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