Written Before Listen
King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard is a band who I just recently got myself into. I reviewed 3 of their albums that belonged to their microtonal trilogy but they are still pretty new to me. As you can tell, they recently released a new album called “Butterfly 3000” and with that being known, King Gizzard aren’t ones to do the same albums twice. With this here, I am not expecting anything microtonal as hearing microtonality will be a real big surprise for me. With that being said, let’s see what this album has
Instrumentally,King Gizzard throws away with their rock instrumentation as this is nowhere near a rock record. The drums and bass are still prevalent but the guitars for the majority of the time are replaced with analog synthesizers. There are some instances of acoustic guitars or pianos but that is only on occasional places. Am I a fan of this direction? Yes. If you remember my “KG” review, you might remember that I actually enjoyed the song “Intrasport” which was an instance of King Gizzard going for an electronic microtonal dance jam. I’m glad that they took a more electronic approach on this one.
Knowing Gizz, you’ll know that they go for a certain theme for each album. It could be a lyrical theme but for the majority of the time, it’s an instrumental concept. On “Flying Microtonal Banana”, they decided to tune their instruments using microtonality. On “Butterfly 3000”, they decided to worship electronics and synthesizers and putting them into a band setting. Overall, as I said about the instrumentation, I am glad that they took this route but I’m not a fan of how they did it. I think the overall worship of the synthesizer could’ve been done better.
As I said earlier, this isn’t a rock record. It’s not one particular genre to be honest. Instead, it’s a blend of psychedelia, pop and electronic. Surely there are instances where rock takes influence. Songs like the opener and especially “Interior People” take a Krautrock approach to their sound as both songs are driven by a Motorik beat. A lot of the songs take a more positive approach to pop music but “Catching Smoke” and “Ya Love” are the prime suspects of exactly that. Fortunately, most of the genre crossovers are successful but unfortunately there are some aspects that don’t become the best. Especially the more Sunshine based crossovers because I think the uplift quality isn’t reached for the majority of the time as it sounds a little too overbearing. Luckily, the rest of them are done pretty well.
King Gizzard are quite eclectic people. Overtime they have done so many styles of music. They are bound to have some influences. On this album, there is one grand influence and it’s actually one of their contemporaries. Tame Impala. King Gizz’ blend of psychedelia, pop and electronic is very similar to “Currents” era Tame Impala. Sure there are elements of classic prog and some Of Montreal influence but Tame Impala is definitely a starting point for this album.
As I said, I think the electronic influence isn’t well done yet. I also think some of the softer songs on here aren’t successful. I think as psychedelic pop music, there are a lot of better examples of this. This is just another instance of King Gizzard (like usual) re-inventing themselves but this time, it’s in a more uplifting and electronic approach. Personally, I enjoy it but it’s certainly not my favorite i’ve heart from them.
I’ve yet to dislike a King Gizzard album but there is so far one album I’ve yet to love. As the new decade goes, their releases are solid at best and mediocre at worst. Let’s see what they have in store coming up because their might be a new release coming soon from them.