CLUTCH – Full Fathom Five: Audio Field Recording

CLUTCH - Full Fathom Five: Audio Field Recording
  • 6/10
    CLUTCH - Full Fathom Five: Audio Field Recording - 6/10


Weathermaker Music
Release date: November 11, 2008

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

The veteran Hard Rockin’ Clutch has come to insure that all you Rockers out there know that they are still around and breathing. By doing so they released a new CD / DVD of four live venue performances around the US and in Australia. Unfortunately, it’s hard to fathom what all the fuss about!

They started out in Germantown, Maryland in 1990. A Year after that they released their first official EP, Pitchfork. Between the years 1993-2007 they released eight studio albums not including all the live and single releases. So these guys are well experienced in their field.

Their playing style is quite interesting; they play Hard Rock with touches of Funk, Blues, a bit of old Hardcore and Stoner Rock – all are clouded with a 70s sound. If this doesn’t remind you of anyone – just check out some of Faith No More’s old records. Clutch is not Faith No More’s successor but they are doing quite a decent job. Clutch’s recent studio release was in 2007 under the name of From Beale Street To Oblivion. Their new CD / DVD Full Fathom Five is another marker in their long career but it is not that major of a mark.

Without a doubt, and possessing some major soundmen, the recordings are great and well engineered. The recordings were in Pittsburgh (2008), Sydney and two gigs from Sayreville, New Jersey (2007). The producers did really well in capturing these guys’ works on stage but, you can say, almost everything stops here.

Clutch presents a variety of material from all of their albums and, like every band on stage, try to give their whole to make their best. Unfortunately, aside from some golden moments with average to good songs like the heavy “The Dragon Fly”, the Hard Rockin’ blues attack of “The Elephant Riders” (kickedy kaka – that’s some funny stuff) and the psychedelic wah-wah Rocker “Promoter”, the other tracks on this one are just hitting and are not, with respect, head spinners. Although the band do, without a doubt, show some complex and partly interesting pieces… they are not hitting the bull’s eye.

All throughout the album, you get the feeling that you are in the outskirts of Texas, drinking beer and riding the rodeo in a southern strip club. Maybe this image is too farfetched and that alcohol or southern music are bad, but this band is not a southern Country group, maybe they try to be, if they do – they shouldn’t. Songs like “Animal Farm” and the funny deal with the Bingo and Old McDonald’s “Ei Ey Ei Ey Eo” of “Texan Book Of the Dead” are just not good, not even average.

In addition, there is the semi-instrumental, “Cypress Gold” and “The Yeti”, which can be labeled as “not bad” works. They have many parts that could have been cut because it’s hard to identify their connection to the song. If you make an instrumental go for it full time! These two could have been full instrumentals.

As for the band, the only problem is a bit with the veteran singer and guitarist, Neil Fallon. As a guitarist, he is doing a good job making some interesting riffs with his co-guitar partner Tim Sult.  As a vocalist, Fallon is the guy that is hard to understand in some courses of the band’s songs. His southern accent makes it hard to make out his words and sometimes he yells stuff that sounds like it wasn’t even meant to be there in the first place. Other than that, the band uses organ and keyboards, additional guitar and harp. All these add-ons were performed and selected with good taste.

Clutch has released something for the fans to enjoy, both on DVD and in an audio CD. The overall work behind the curtains, as long as sound is concerned is great, otherwise it’s pretty sad that the material is not hitting as hard as their production. But, with respect, they can do it better – cheers mates.


  • Lior Stein

    Lior was a reviewer, DJ and host for our Thrash Metal segment called Terror Zone, based out of Haifa, Israel. He attributes his love of Metal to his father, who got him into bands like Deep Purple, Rainbow, Boston, and Queen. When he was in junior high he got his first Iron Maiden CD, The Number Of The Beast. That's how he started his own collection of albums. Also, he's the guitarist, vocalist and founder of the Thrash Metal band Switchblade. Most of his musical influences come from Metal Church, Vicious Rumors, Overkill, and Annihilator.

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