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Head Full of Pills
Released: 2004, Small Stone Records
Former Screaming Trees-man Van Connor has been slogging along in the rock underground since 1996 with Valis yet HEAD FULL OF PILLS marks only the band’s second full-length album. Believe me, this is a shame because Valis is a much more interesting musical entity than his previous band ever was.
Harkening back to the classic rock sounds of the 1970s, “Welcome to Home School” tears through your speakers with a youthful feel that’s both aggressive and welcoming, Valis inviting everyone in to the riff-rock extravaganza that is about to occur. From there the disc flies (or should I say “trips”) to all the various musical nooks and crannies that were oh so interesting 30 years ago, sometimes thrilling, other times meandering, and still others just odd. There is a definite acid-trip vibe to the proceedings, easily belied in titles like “Ape Canyon”, “Humanzee” and “Perpetual Motion Machine” (this one in particular conjures visions of wild rainbow lights, go-go dancers, bongs, smoke machines - the works). It’s all well meant and well medicated, everything heaving along with gusto, topped off with Van’s wild hippy vocals.
Of course, as with everything that happened musically in the 70s, there are parts of this disc that are both vapid and annoying, but hey that’s the idea, man. After all, what’s left? Just grooving along with the riffs my friend and HEAD FULL OF PILLS has riffs aplenty. Oh yes.
1) Welcome to Home School
2) Head Full of Pills
6) We Got a Situation
7) Across the Sky
8) Ape Canyon
9) World of Decay
10) Perpetual Motion Machine
11) More Moke
Van Conner: Vocals/Guitar
Patrick Conner: Guitar
Sean Hollister: Drums
Adrian Makins: Bass
Wes Weresch: Guitar Synthesizer
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