Flesh Vehicle, Flesh Vehicle
Nashville's Flesh Vehicle rock with abandon and a sense of humor on this new six-song EP, the second release from former Knoxvillian and ex-Superdrag bassist Tom Pappas's current project.
Pappas departed Superdrag some three years ago in large part because his own punkish, high-energy songwriting chops needed an outlet not provided in the fetching, sweetly melodic context of the latter band. The resulting Flesh Vehicle has been too long in releasing its wares, but the songs Pappas and co. have given us are both refreshing and infectiously charged.
Channeling the weirdo fuzz-pop sensibilities of the Flaming Lips with the wanton rawness of the Stooges, F.V. retools and re-records older gems such as "Perfect State of Grace" as well as newer numbers like "Cupie Doll Disguise" and "Mix N Match", infusing all of them with a sense of immediacy that well nigh tears its way out of your speakers. Pappas' vocals in particular sound rejuvenated, stronger, more tenor-inflected and more direct than in days of yore when his distinctively high-pitched nasal braying often irritated as much as it pleased.
New band members Darin Karnes (drums) and Mark Robertson (bass and backing vox) add just the right level of rhythmic elasticity to Pappas' squalling axes and goofy, good-rockin' charms. Serious music that doesn't take itself too seriously.