The Heavy Eyes Premiere “Saint” from He Dreams of Lions

the heavy eyes

Memphis fuzz rock trio The Heavy Eyes will release their third album, He Dreams of Lions, Nov. 13 on Kozmik Artifactz. The band, who are to be confused neither with Baltimore’s The Flying Eyes nor Indiana’s The Heavy Company, dig deep into modern-styled fuzz boogie throughout the crisp, straightforward 11 tracks/47 minutes, with bluesy flourish adding further heft to the righteous fuzz of Tripp Shumake‘s guitars and Wally Anderson‘s bass while Eric Garcia propels the roll of a track like “Old Saltillo Road” while going more all-out on a faster piece like “Smoke Signals,” a Fu Manchu-style wall of fuzz built up around laid back vocals.

The Heavy Eyes are efficient and conscious of what kind of noise they want to make at any given turn, but hardly unipolar, setting a back-country mood with nighttime insect noise at the start of opener “Shadow Shaker” before unloading the first of many rock solid and solidly rocking riffs, Shumake‘s penchant for highlight hooks taken a step further from the band’s impressive 2012 sophomore outing, Maera, on the subsequent “Saint” and “Z-Bo,” two shorter groovers that seem to pull in the listener before they even realize it, He Dreams of Lions building considerable momentum right from the start and holding onto it until they get to the Queens of the Stone Age-esque riffing of eight-minute closer “Modern Shells.”

the heavy eyes he dreams of lionsPeak-era Queens isn’t a bad comparison point for the album as a whole, but The Heavy Eyes are more inclined to nestle into a groove, as they do on “Old Saltillo Road” and move into the title-track, which trades echoing, spacious verse lines for a more intensely-distorted chorus, an edge of grunge working its way into their sound on the sly before “Hail to the King, Baby” brings back the megafuzz and seems to layer in some organ deep in the left channel mix, ending up in an open, beery groove that rolls right into an extended finish of organ and amp noise, “Smoke Signals” picking up with Garcia‘s toms to keep the pace high as they make ready to move into the end section of the record with the particularly Fu-ey “The Fool.”

Their ability to switch up vibes is pretty well encapsulated between “Smoke Signals,” “The Fool” and “Somniloquy,” but they stay within a fuzz rock context throughout while effectively toying with one side or another of genre convention, not reinventing the wheel so much as reminding how smoothly it can roll when pushed just right. Groove is the unifying factor, and remains so as “Somniloquy” and “Littlefinger” prepare the ground for the finale, the latter rounding out with some coming-apart chug as the beginning of the closer serves as an underscoring to the point of how much Anderson‘s tone has been a highlight factor all along, even though it’s the guitar out front for another hairy lead.

It’s a party front to back, but again, not necessarily beholden entirely to one mood or another to get there — that is, not everything on He Dreams of Lions is exhaustingly uptempo — and that proves much to the album’s benefit. Still, one of its great strengths lies in the early momentum it mounts, and as a part of that (and as a means for demonstrating what I mean about Anderson‘s bass above), I’m thrilled to be able to host the premiere of “Saint.” You’ll find it on the player below, followed by more from the PR wire on The Heavy Eyes.


Tripp Shumake on “Saint”:

“Saint is a frenzied blues groove layered under the frantic screaming of a mad man. As pounding drums and slinky bass surge through the speakers, the chaos builds and swells until it breaks. Leaving the listener with more questions than answers but nodding along just the same.”

Following on from their 2011 self-titled debut, and 2012’s successful Maera album, Memphis trio The Heavy Eyes return to the fold this November with their most accomplished record to date. Over eleven tracks, amidst the unbridled rawness of ‘Saint’, the sheer weight of ‘Z-Bo’ and R’n’B shake appeal of ‘Smoke Signal, hypnotic hard rock riffs are delivered thick and fast through distorted fuzz boxes, gnarled bass lines and levee breaking drum beats. This is an album that draws heavily from the heaviest (Led Zeppelin, Humble Pie, Mountain) and in doing so turns out new ideas with a punishing authenticity and honesty in line with their Memphis blues heritage.

This is The Heavy Eyes, one of rock and roll’s best and brightest, and He Dreams Of Lions will be released via Kozmik Artifactz on 13th November 2015.

The Heavy Eyes:
Tripp Shumake – Vocals, Guitars
Wally Anderson – Bass
Eric Garcia – Drums

The Heavy Eyes on Thee Facebooks

The Heavy Eyes on Bandcamp

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Kozmik Artifactz website

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One Response to “The Heavy Eyes Premiere “Saint” from He Dreams of Lions

  1. GlenW says:

    I dig it.

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