Morning Fatty – Some Songs From Resistance (¿) – Singles Review
Morning Fatty is looking for some of that good ol’ unbiased feedback here at the homepage…and you readers out there already know that’s exactly what they’re gonna get…
Let’s start with the big ol’ WTF to sending a guy that writes reviews on music for a living just a little tiny PIECE of your album as opposed to sending out the whole thing…what on earth is up with that? I mean…I can tell you from the handful of experiences I’ve had in that regard that it’s not usually the sign of confidence in the entire record…which seems odd to me…the music of Morning Fatty really doesn’t have many issues beyond a person’s personal-taste. But yeah…there’s probably not a whole heck of a lot of denying that there’s going to be a few moments of rough-edges or some weirdness of some sort on their full-album Resistance – and for the record…no…not a strategy I’d adopt when sending out your music. Almost ESPECIALLY in a case like this…when it’s REALLY GOOD – the only conclusion you can really draw to is that they’re hiding SOMETHING…and why cause any suspicion at all if it’s not necessary? So do I think something is a little off…a little weird perhaps…maybe a bit bizarre when it comes to the minds behind the music of Morning Fatty? Why yes sir! Yes I do.
Thankfully, they’ve found their way to a place that thrives on things being a little strange sometimes…but for real people – make an album, be PROUD to push each and every moment of your hard-work and effort out there…otherwise you’ll have to admit to yourself that somewhere along the lines…ya must’ve made some filler on that record. As to where it is or what it is…I have no idea – I like what I’ve heard so far…so we’ll leave it at that and assume they’re just testing the waters for now. Nuff said? Let’s move on to the music and we’ll talk about the songs I’ve been privy to from the new Morning Fatty record Resistance.
Notably – the album itself was produced by none other than Roger Lima of Less Than Jake. The one thing I love the most about genuine rock-stars lending their assistance to a record is that they’re not a very mercenary-like bunch; you find a big name attached to an album and it’s generally because they’re interested in the music and they know they’re not wasting their time. There’s a few…but for the most part, a decent name of notoriety like Lima’s showing up on a record is a really good sign of positive things to come. While there is definitely a bright-snap and bounce to the more punk-funk side of Morning Fatty that will remind you a little of Less Than Jake perhaps – you’ll probably be as impressed as I was that you don’t hear MORE of it. Lima’s clearly let the band be as they are for the most part – and I think that’s equally as admirable as I think it’s also paid off well for the guys in Morning Fatty…there’s a lot here to listen to, even if I DIDN’T get the full album this time around!
I started with a song called “Dreams” to get my first sample of Resistance and spark-up the ol’ Morning Fatty…and after a somewhat mysterious opening that could have led us into a complete salsa-induced frenzy as it begins, it breaks nearly thirty-seconds in to really bring out an impressive melody. If Andrew White had that deep monotone-esque kind of voice, you’d have a song that would fit impressively into the Cake catalogue…something like the sounds you’ll hear on the Pressure Chief album. It’s light…it moves incredibly well with fantastic melody in abundance and the twists, turns & transitions of “Dreams” get more and more impressive as they play. Andrew White…as much as I might enjoy the Cake-dude…is NOT the Cake-dude…and I’m loving the sound of his much more melodic tones leading the way on this first tune I’m listening to. Tim Mulberry gets an equally-high raised up thumb from me for a sonically impressive beat-down of those drums back there. They ALL deserve credit by and large – there’s no doubt about the SICK level of musicianship and tightness of this record…not at all as far as I’m concerned.
Alright…now maybe I’m pissed off…WHERE ARE THOSE OTHER SONGS DAMMIT? Quit holding out on me Morning Fatty!
Miller Joyner decides to light-up the beginning of “Oblivion” with some rad guitar as the track moves on to become a huge, massive blend of old-school funk & soul-music fused with some extremely clever modern-day updates to the entire sound and a big alternative-chip on its shoulder. “Oblivion” is seriously fuckin’ fantastic…and I love the mix on this cut…Lima’s done a great job of preserving what I’d assume would sound extremely close to what Morning Fatty sounds like LIVE here on this track…you get a great sense of what pure-entertainment this band could truly be, just by listening. White sounds nearly identical to Brandon Boyd of Incubus on “Oblivion” and even the song overall is played like something you’d find on their S.C.I.E.N.C.E. album but with the clear & clean tones of the records they put out afterwards. What a seriously tight jam full of awesomeness! It’s got funk, it’s got rock, it’s got soul…and ALL of this is great sure…but what you’ll notice more than anything else from “Oblivion” is that this band actually has got PASSION for the music they make. Whether it was Lima cracking the whip over their bruised & broken bodies, or the band ensuring that they didn’t hit the studio until after 4:20…whatever the recipe was – they’ve clearly gotten their best onto this album, these songs are KILLER.
And WHOA! As if I wasn’t LOVING every moment of this and wanting to bogart this entire album already – but someone puff-puff-pass Tim Mulberry an award will ya? His performance on these songs has been impeccable and really helped snap the vibrant sound of Morning Fatty together perfectly…but Jesus H! LISTEN to what he’s doing on “Good Buds!” Criminy! At LEAST get him some water will ya? I’ll admit…I think it was his performance that sold me on a track that at first I wasn’t sure would get to me as much as it already has. It borrows much more from a ska-attitude than the rest of their music has to this point…they’ve hinted at it previously, but this is the first time they really let that part out in-full, which you get throughout the verse. The chorus is a raging-blazer of amped-up guitar solos and a simplified, crowd-pleaser of an anthem to sing-along to. They burn this one down from the front to the back – I might be stoned myself at nearly any given point of a day, but there’s no question in my mind about the uplifting feeling and vibe you get from the ol’ Morning Fatty here – this is just purely damn good music. I’d be interested to hear how Lima felt this all turned out from his own perspective…I’ve grown up on Less Than Jake and spent much time there at points throughout my own timeline…but I’m wondering now if this might be much more like a case of what happened with good ol’ Sum 41. Some of you more than likely know that story…or have at least heard of a band called Treble Charger…at least if you’re up here in Canada you probably have. Greig Nori of that band went on to basically produce some of the decade’s best as Sum 41 came out into their own, and eventually onto worldwide domination for several years. Their very first hit-song…whichever one you’ll want to pin to them…would more than likely have gone on to sell more than the entire Treble Charger catalogue on its own. Some musicians would have hated being in, or ending up in that position – but not Greig, no. That dude just grinned and continued to get behind the boards and make those records shine with a brightness you’d never find lining the Treble Charger albums or sound. While there’s still that similar bounce & rubbery-rock feel to much of Morning Fatty that you could compare to Less Than Jake…you can really hear how much work that Lima has put into making every second of these songs sparkle with fantastic flawlessness that sometimes we feel a duty to provide to others while we sometimes sell ourselves a little shorter. I’m just saying…it’d be an interesting conversation…I have a feeling he has no choice more than I do than to just sit-back, listen, and be audibly fucking STUNNED at how awesome this band really IS.
Excellent reggae-infused rhythms of the title-tune “Resistance” – you get an impressive amount of musicianship from Morning Fatty on this one song alone as it winds itself through a five-minute track of pure instrumental bliss that once again showcases and highlights the band’s ability to rock & transition through seriously diverse and complex grooves. You can hear the solid relationship in the rhythm section of Mulberry’s incredibly versatile drums alongside the understated grooves from unsung hero John Pop on bass. He’s been a rock throughout this sampling of songs and perfectly right there in time, every time; he’ll get his best opportunity to shine on the following cut I examined called “Suture.” But as for where I’m at right now…I’m still on the brilliant & unexpected twist of finding Morning Fatty silent in the vocal-department of their title-track! I really wasn’t expecting that at all…and as much as I would completely call me a hopeless fan of White’s voice already – hearing him take the track off to roll-up another and let the other three take over makes for a seriously satisfying listen as well. Great textures, great ideas and execution that is clearly ready-to-go pro any time now – they might be called Morning Fatty, but understand that does NOT equate to ‘lazy stoners’ – it’s sharp as can be from every angle you set your speakers for the sound to hit you in the face.
“Suture” was yet another example of somehow finding a way to take it up another level…which at this point, I mean…HOW? Another set of extraordinary ideas get fused together here in a wild-blend of like…something like Incubus and Bad Religion combining forces…maybe a little Less Than Jake influence on this one too, to be fair! Probably not as heavy on the Bad Religion aspect until it heads towards the end, but you’ll hear what I’m hearing for sure. White delivers on his front with one of his most noteworthy performances…dipping into falsetto and back before finding some serious aggression and attitude towards the final minutes of “Suture.” The final two-minutes of this song are fucking epic as they let loose their most rock-induced moments that I’ve heard so far, delivering just as solidly here as they have in every other direction they’ve chosen to go down.
The final-cut I had was called “Laloquezia” – which was another wicked example of the band’s ability to explode and change directions at a moment’s notice. The guitar-work and solos throughout these songs have been incredible so far and this final one for me served as a real highlight for what you’ll hear from Joyner – dude’s got a smart set of instincts for when to take the spotlight and how to REALLY use it! Overall, “Laloquezia” sounds like you can hear the audible influence of 311 throughout its tenderized & melodic verse before it goes storming into something almost close to “Welcome To Paradise” by Green Day. This band clearly wears their influences right on their sleeves – but DAMN do they wear them well!
And if I had to sum up this entire experience…well…MOST of the experience anyhow…I’d say I’m beyond pleased with what I’ve heard from Morning Fatty and that they’ve got me HOOKED.
And even though all that pleasure keeps wanting to turn to rage when I keep reminding myself that I’m still missing several songs…I know a good thing when I hear it – and it’s a good thing they’re so goddamn good I’ve got no choice but to let it slide!
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