The December Sound - s/t
(self-released 2008)

From Aural Innovations #39 (May 2008)

The December Sound are a Boston/Brooklyn band (guitarist/vocalist Zack Sarzana relocated to Brooklyn) who recently released their debut album. The set opens with "Never", a full impact assault of heavy rocking psychedelia, as if Helios Creed were playing guitar with the Brian Jonestown Massacre. The intensity level goes into orbit on "No Heaven Like Hell". The guitars bubble and shimmer like Hawkwind's Space Ritual, but with a punked out searing edge. Relentless! "Drone Refusenik" has a trippy Eastern flavor to an otherwise power psych rocking tune. "Painkiller", "Maker" and "Tape Tape" are other power psych rock tunes I enjoyed.

I've read where a number of reviewers have referred to The December Sound as Shoegaze, but I don't see how they could be labeled a Shoegaze band. "Reminder" and "Truth Hurts" certainly explore that realm, with their heavy but totally dreamy guitars. But otherwise, definitely not Shoegaze. is a cool track with a mish-mash of freaked out efx'd guitar, drones, voice samples and general psycho mind-fuckedness. "Kill Me (Before I Kill You)" is probably the closest to a pop song on the album. But don't be deceived, as there's lots happening here. It's got a catchy melody, while being loaded to the max with brain bashing intensity, lysergic freakouts and an off-kilter rhythmic pulse that will knock you off your feet. "Il Forte" is another beautifully dreamy melodic and catchy song, and still completely psychedelicized. And "Not If It's On Your Time" is the lengthy jamming closing track. The first 8 minutes of this nearly 14 minute piece is a gorgeously drugged yet high voltage jam song. Then it goes into fade out space mode for a few minutes before winding down the set just as it began with a revision of "Never". A very impressive set of heavy guitar driven psychedelia.

For more information you can visit The December Sound web site at:
Hear songs at
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Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz

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