Psychedelic, dirty, ‘come get some’ rock. These Automatic Changers‘ album starts with a sombre chain gang play, lulling you into a sense of oppression mentality before sending you headfirst into the title track.
The Auckland band’s debut album experiments within its soundscape, heard in the sassy ’70s stylings of Shine Like Gold, as well as the stripped-back interlude before Deserter Stomp and the feel good dance anthem Karma Queen.
The highlight for me was the nonchalant rhythm section expertly holding down and driving the groove through runs, hits and breakdowns. The sound starts getting muddy and uneven towards the end, with the vocals so far back in the mix they lack that bite I kept expecting, tending instead to get overpowered by riffs and effects. The tracks were recorded live to tape at York Street under the experienced eyes of Jason Huss and Neil Baldock, so likely that was an intentional aspect of the album’s statement.