Dead Meadow

Feathers (Matador)

SXSW Records

Dead Meadow

Feathers (Matador)

Dead Meadow is emblematic of the clever ways in which many outfits in recent years have taken Black Sabbath's sound and dissected, reassembled, and built upon it like new, hellishly magnificent wings of a crumbling, ancient castle. Similar to Bardo Pond and Comets on Fire, Meadow adds a bit of sweetness to the stoned-out riffage, Jason Simon's echoing croon providing a welcome counterpoint. Unfortunately, the D.C. quartet has taken a half-step back from the grandeur of 2003's Matador debut (and fourth record overall), Shivering King and Others. On Feathers, the vocals are upfront and the production more friendly. They've built upon the calm, dreamy songcraft that highlighted previous efforts, but the risky sludgefeasts have lost much of their psychedelic bluster, sounding instead like mellowed-out Mudhoney B-sides. Even on the potent folksy chillouts, the ubiquitously jacked-up reverb leaves songs so distant-sounding they don't truly engage. Epic, 14-minute closer "Through the Gates of the Sleepy Silver Door" is the exception rather than the rule. It's the pinnacle of Dead Meadow's potent brew: a flowing river of trippy guitar squall, slow-burning doom riffs, and light-crust bluesy scrabble punctuated by Simon's vocal reverberations. It seems like it never ends, but to its credit, it never needs to. If only the rest could match. (Friday, March 18, 10pm @ the Parish)

**

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at austinchronicle.com/sxsw. Sign up for our South By-specific newsletter at austinchronicle.com/newsletters for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
Thursday Picks & Sleepers
Thursday Picks & Sleepers
SXSW Thursday handicapping by the blurb

March 20, 2015

Wednesday Showcases
Wednesday Showcases

March 20, 2015

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Being Dead
Fame Money Death by Drive By (Record Review)

Rachel Rascoe, April 12, 2019

Texas Platters
Hey Cowboy
Sandy Cheeks (Record Review)

Rachel Rascoe, April 12, 2019

More by Michael Chamy
Texas Platters
Palaxy Tracks
Twelve Rooms (Record Review)

Sept. 16, 2005

Texas Platters
Comet
Feathers From the Wing EP (Record Review)

Aug. 12, 2005

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle