For those unfamiliar, a jackalope is essentially a mythical jackrabbit with antlers. Why German heavy rock four-piece Plainride might’ve chosen a jackalope as there mascot, where that jackalope might have gone and what might have led it to come back, I couldn’t really say, but if Return of the Jackalope, the raucous Cologne outfit’s debut album, proves anything, it’s that when the jackalope came back, he brought the party with him. Primo high-energy fuzz delivery in the spirit of Truckfighters ensues throughout the record’s 13-count-’em-13 tracks, delivered via Beerfuzz Records, and neither in its approach nor its 71-minute runtime is the album shy about going completely over the top to make its point. Led by guitarist/vocalist Max Rebel, and with Fabe van Fuzz on guitar, Leo on bass and Damian the Brute on drums (the presumably less brutish Andrew plays on the record), they show little interest in letting up and instead take a desert-cruising forward drive that varies in its burl and brashness but rarely steps away from beer-drenched riffery in its extended course.
To call it single-minded might be missing the point. Return of the Jackalope should come with a warning not to operate heavy machinery under its influence, the rush at its fiercest is bound to lead at least to some poor decision-making. To that end, I’m happy today to present “Devil at Your Heels,” a top-speed later cut from Plainride that’s buried deep in the reaches of Return of the Jackalope but a standout nonetheless for anyone who might take it on. More throttled than “Return of the Jackalope” itself or “(The Beards upon) Mt. Rushmore,” it precedes closer “Warpdrive” and is one of several boots to the ass the band delivers along the way. Return of the Jackalope is a lot to experience in one sitting. It’s entirely possible that Plainride will exhaust you long before they run out of breath — spoiler alert: they don’t — but while they packed two albums’ worth of album into their debut, there’s something about the sheer willpower in so doing that makes it hard not to admire. Anyone can put out a 35-minute record. Plainride are about to put out two and call it one. Take that, convention.
Return of the Jackalope is out July 24 on Beerfuzz — preorders are available now — and no doubt will be followed by a due bit of road-dogging riotousness. More on that as I hear it, but for now, catch a glimpse of the otherworldly beast with the clip Plainride put together for “Devil at Your Heels” below, and please enjoy:
Plainride, “Devil at Your Heels”
Imagine a pack of rabid tumbleweeds sweeping across the hot desert sand of Mojave set on fire by the nearby explosion of a Dodge Challenger ’69 driven into a fuel soaked pile of Orange Half-Stacks by four whole-body bearded lumberjacks dressed in bearskin.
You still follow? Good.
Now what if I tell you said lumberjacks use guitar strings as dental floss and consider alligator-wrestling the most innocent part of their childhood? There you go.
Inspired by Stoner Rock legends like Clutch as well as European Half-Gods Planet Of Zeus and Stoner Train, we here at PLAINRIDE practice what we consider one of the finest Genres ever to emerge from the sacred ashes of the 70’s.
Earth Rockin’ Drums, A beard growth inducing Bass, Fuzzomental Guitars, the Roar of a Wolfman and a whole lotta beer. Ah yeah – and we got those nasty lil’ Jackalopes all over the place. They’re like… F*cking everywhere. What’s up with that, man?