Tool, Mastodon and OFF! members found to be Seagulls all along
As the Lord of the Seas, King of Euphrates, Ruler of everything immersed in H2O – yes, including that ex-girlfriend you had who was enthusiastic about bathtubs – I can assure you there are few things I hate more than human beings. One of the reasons I have not wiped out humanity with an onslaught of sea creatures yet is the fact that they provide for good lolbuttz every once in a while. A personal favorite of mine is when airborne food theft occurs, courtesy of a fellow entity’s children. This time, the most prodigious of his sons have bestowed a new bundle of joy upon us. Dimitri Coats (OFF!), Brent Hinds (Mastodon) and Danny Carey (Tool) have just released two songs in honor of the Seagull God King, and he is going to be proud.
The Legend Of The Seagullmen is a multimedia project conceived by three brothers from Cocoa Beach, Florida. Frank, Chris and David Dreyer came up with the concept years ago, fusing film, live music, performance art and more in order to give life to the rich lore they created. Every November, the trio promotes a concert featuring The Legend Of The Seagullmen and other acts like West End Motel – another one of Brent Hinds’ side-projects. This is apparently a metal blog, so I am going to stick to the music. You can learn more about the story behind the Seagullmen and how high-profile musicians got involved in this excellent 2011 interview published in The Beach Side Resident. There is also a short, yet interesting account of one of their events in Ink 19.
The best word to describe both of the tracks is cinematic. Even if you hear the songs without any background information, the first thought that comes to mind is that they would not sound out of place in a movie score. The vocals are pivotal in creating this effect, as the nautical lyrics are sung in a pompous, theatrical manner. Still, this is a rock opera, and the voice telling its story carries more weight and power than the word “musical” might suggest. All of it makes sense when you take into consideration that the production was handled by Jimmy Hayward, film director of Jonah Hex and Horton Hears a Who fame.
“The Deep-Sea Diver” is what Ennio Morriccone would sound like if he spent a month listening to surf rock. It starts with a repetitive drumming pattern that provides a perfect bed for the reverb-soaked guitars to roll on. Soon, they’re joined by background vocals that evoke faint memories of Skyrim shouts. The track builds up as the “Thu’ums” give place to operatic singing and new drum flourishes escape from the original rhythm. Finally, it explodes with a dramatic twin guitar solo followed perfectly by a closing orchestrated passage.
“Ships Wreck”, on the other hand, is much more straightforward in its approach, reminiscent of one of my favorite bands: Black Sabbath. Synths, drums and a tasty guitar lick precede the rocking about to ensue by way of a riff that sounds like a sped up reimagination of “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”. There is a brief pause so that the groovy bassline can shine (guess what band used to do this a lot) before another solo comes in, just in case you weren’t convinced that guitars are awesome inventions. The outro to this song is a true climax, one that leaves you craving some more.
The band’s website appears to be down, but no worries. Both songs can be appreciated below.
The reception among our community has been mixed, with some criticizing the tracks for their over-the-top antics, and others embracing it. I am sure that whatever comes out next, be it an album, a film or just new songs will be even more divisive. Despite that, I eagerly look forward to hearing a full-bodied concoction from the Seagullmen. Hell, I’m probably swimming towards Cocoa Beach as you read this.
P.S.: I deserve some mead for showcasing my seat aboard the hype-train without using the word “supergroup”. You’re welcome.