We’ve said it before, but it still holds true: There’s nothing slow about Slow Walker. Since the band’s 2011 start, they’ve averaged one album or EP per year. Their continually-expanding catalog is full of fast and energetic tunes that straddle the line between garage rock and psych, and those songs are regularly put on display throughout Milwaukee (and beyond) when Slow Walker plays out.
The band’s admirable output hasn’t impacted the song quality whatsoever. If anything, the extra reps only serve to make Slow Walker sound better with each new record. That trend continues in full force with the hard-working rock and roll outfit’s forthcoming Ah Yes—one of two releases the band put out this month alone.
The 11-song album kicks off with a lumbering distorted bass line that gives way to driving guitars, pummeling percussion, and lyrics instructing listeners to “Weed Out The Squares.” The lively opener’s energy continues in “Sacrificial Lamb” and first single “Ride” by way of short, deliberate shouted vocals and blistering guitar solos that punctuate crunchy riffs. The hazy and hastened tendencies push into “Cousin Chad” and “Out Of Place” as well, but the flurry of raucous instrumentation also clears up from time to time.
“Rain Dream”—a delicate 80-second instrumental interlude—is a welcome respite from the distortion and all-around intensity employed on the record’s first five songs. Similarly, “Makin’ Plans” and the dreamy “Shades Of Ganymede” also serve as a stylistic downshift to break up the boisterous likes of “CAN U WUP?” and eight-minute album-ending stoner jam “No Drinks” that’s rife with squealing riffs and lyrics like “Not drinkin’ for a week / No whiskey, just weed.”
Ah Yes is Slow Walker’s best work yet…at least until next year’s release likely overtakes it. Before Friday’s Cactus Club release show, you can listen to the record in its entirety below.