Valient Thorr

(Volcom Entertainment 2008)Valient Thorr - Immortalizer

Surgery, what surgery? Just months after donating a kidney to his ailing father, frontman Valient Himself and his band, Valient Thorr, have returned with "Immortalizer," their fourth album in just five years. With their scraggily beards and a Roky Erickson-like style that reeks of secretive conspiracies, these denim dudes may look a little precarious even when they are saying what everyone is already thinking. With the help of famed producer Jack Endino, the band returns to party and catch up on politics.

Valient Thorr put a ZZ Top style gallop on the guitars of "Mask of Sanity" before the song charges into Motorhead territory. Himself shares visions of power hungry police that do not seem so crazy as he rallies listeners over snarling electric guitar on "Tomorrow Police" while "1000 Winters in a Row" pounds mercilessly. The band lean more towards metal with the familiar and fluid "Parable of Daedalus" while the heavier and edgier "Birdhead Looking @ Goldenhands" shows some teeth with sharp riffs and hammering drumming that never stops.

You might be able to charge Valient Thorr with being prolific but you certainly cannot accuse them of just going through the motions. Perhaps the only significant disappointment of "Immortalizer" is the sound alike moments that pop up from time to time. But at every twist and turn of "Immoralizer," Himself is throwing himself out there, preaching his messages as the band backs him up with instrumentation that gets harder and heavier with each track. Screw the kidney; Valient Thorr is ready to rock.


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