Inhaler

TAD

Mechanic/Giant, 1993

http://www.taddoyle.com/tad

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 08/22/2018

On their third record, Tad – who is undeniably the heaviest band to come out of Seattle – joined the ranks of the other grunge bands by making the jump to major labels. Joined by new drummer Josh Sinder, who is a powerhouse and one of the most ignored grunge drummers, and producer J. Mascis of Dinosaur Jr., the band set about to make something a bit different than its predecessor, 1991’s my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 8-Way Santa.

One gets a feeling right off the bat that this is more of a metal record than previous Tad albums, but it’s still got the grunge factor there courtesy of guitarist extraordinaire Gary Thorstensen. First single “Grease Box” is one of the heaviest songs the band ever did and the bass work of Kurt Danielson is something to behold. This is just awe-inspiring and endlessly fascinating. One can also hear Tad actually singing, which is a bit of a change and different than the growling and screaming he’s done previously. This can be best heard on “Leafy Incline” and “Luminol,” and the latter actually features Mascis playing piano, which gives the songs a bit more of an intimate feeling than say something like “Jack Pepsi.” Hell, “Gouge” is more of a mid -empo track than the band had ever really done, but they pull it off really well.

Songs like “Throat Locust” contain some grunge elements and heaviness that would’ve blown Soundgarden out of the water. “Lycanthrope” has more of a groove to it and that’s all due to Danielson’s epic bass work. The man is one of the most underrated bassists I’ve ever heard. This was just the way Tad was, and it’s things like this that earned the band the respect of its peers. It just took a little bit longer for the music buying public to fully get behind a band with this much gravitas. Looking at the song titles might not suggest this, but there is real power behind this material.

Inhaler may not be the band’s best overall record, but there is plenty to recommend to the average music listener to get them enthralled and interested.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


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