Sunday, January 13, 2013

What's in a Name?

Hello my friends!

I hope the new year finds you well. With the exception of Dan, whom I have seen in person recently, it's been radio silence from the rest of you. Everything OK? New Years resolution to permanently turn off the computer? Nothing worth listening to since the Mayan apocalypse?

All kidding aside, let's discuss something serious.

It's been said that there are two types of people in the world; those that enjoy bands with the word "BONG" in their moniker and those that don't. I think you all know where I stand, staunchly, on this issue. Although I wouldn't have the foggiest (haziest?) idea of how to actually use a bong, it seems to be as good a litmus as any for determining weather a group of rockers is worth their salt.

Most groups of this nature have the following in common:
They are heavy.
They play kinda loose. Kris observed a lot of them actually swing.
They usually aren't too fussed about vocals (or don't have them at all)

Let's explore, shall we?

First up, the mighty BONGRIPPER.

-Brutal Tone.
-Way More Brutal Tone Live (Seriously. They were mammoth. Second only to YOB)
-No Vocals
-Some of the best shirts I've seen. Maybe David will post a pic of his if you ask nicely.
-Clean cut looking nice-guys that stuck out at last year's roadburn


Here's the absolutely crushing REEFER SUTHERLAND. One of my all time favs. You may play the opening riff/growl on repeat at my viking funeral.

Next up from Poland BELZEBONG

-Super Heavy, but for lack of a better term.
-A zesty dose of occultism/satanism
-Swing like crazy.
-Bonus points for creative use of the word of the day

-have only released 4 tracks to date...

Ever wonder what the sound of an amp melting/catching on fire sounds like? Wonder no more with BONG THROWER. Soooo fuzzy. If you don't throw the requested $5 at these guys for this album I don't know if we can be friends.

Ok, we've had some fun. Let's get a bit more serious back in the good ol' US of A with BONGZILLA

-Very Dirty
-A little more upbeat (at times) and, dare I say, nuanced than some of the others?
-Do a mean cover of Muddy's Champagne and Reefer.
-Crack me up every single time with this talk box/vocoder line

-They do have vocals. But homie sound like a demon, so it's ok.
-probably overstay their welcome more than any band on this list, in my opinion

...but listen to the riffage on this opening track AMERIJUANICAN. The drums are pretty sweet on this track too:

Finally, let's pay a little tribute to those crazy brits that cut right to the chase. Gentlemen (and Darling Wife), I present to you BONG.

-Easily the spaciest of the bunch. Mysterious even.
-Basically they only play heavy raggas. Actually, there's no basically about it.
-Kim met them at Roadburn. Ask her.
-Seem to be super serious about what they do. Or as serious as one can get with a name like BONG.
-Look at that logo! It spells BONG! Look again!

-They don't jam in my living room every night

I love Bong. Enough said. I recommend "Beyond Ancient Space" or "Mana-Yood-Sushai" but they are hard to find these days. Their "Live at Roadburn" is killer too.


Yours Truly,


  1. The irony of this post is mind bottling.

  2. As a generally anti-drug guy, and sometime prosecutor of federal narcotics crimes, I am sometimes troubled by my love for bong-related music. What gives? However, your post really made me feel better about myself.

    But: no King Bong? What gives?