Scaling the heights of the avant-garde, while shaking the Rock foundations of the underground to its core, this San Diego-based quintet of natural seditionists, Drug Hunt (formerly known as Bad Vibes), have returned with a rebel rousing anthem for the post-millennial generation. “The Tower” is a sprawling, progressive, angst and anxiety-filled banger – that not only manages to stretch your anarchical consciousness – but also expertly twists and turns through tempos and tones with enough musical mayhem to perfectly apply as the soundtrack for the subversive roadmap to revolution.
Starting with a fuzzed out bassline introducing the main riff, the band coalesces around it with piercing organs, loads of guitar and heavy drums – until a first solo soars across the top of the soundscape like a comet ready for impact. Just under a minute in, the verse drops into a gorgeous open space of electric chords, with the rhythm section more tightly mirroring each other and bouncing through a straighter interpretation of the riff. With a mature, low lead – you are introduced to a Political and Social examination of hierarchical structure and modern conformity; to the transgressions of the past which make the future harder to reason with; to the salt of the earth, the potential cracks in its foundation – and the extraordinary lengths to which institutionalized authority will often go just to maintain the status quo.
Watch Drug Hunt – The Tower via YouTube below, or listen via Spotify
After ripping through a second solo above the main riff, the second verse officially catapults the listener into apocalyptical doom, wherein the ‘sacred sins’ that helped create and sustain the ‘wealth of nations’ in generations past, are assuredly on a future-marked collision course with justice. Punctuated by yet another succinct solo, this is where The Tower truly begins to lean.
A stark refrain of Ahh’s along E, D, F and back to E – chillingly haunt while the steady kicks, rising frequencies, and plodding tempo all collude to an apex of unapologetic mayhem. Unfolding as a math-like, psychedelia in double speed – one that art rocks with infinitely more anger and purpose than the hippie-tropes of yesteryear – the band begs you to pay attention, to tune in, dial in, and turn up to the chaos around you. Don’t ‘wait to believe’, don’t dream it all away, don’t drug yourself to stupor. See, tucked away in all the chaos of the section is a call to be present, to be involved, to make your own way, your own choices, your own future. It builds and grows into a chaotic climax that lands in even more doom-laden awesomeness just prior to the 5-minute mark.
Here, the mood and tempo change once more. There are war-like depictions of a failed revolution that savagely burn through these lyrical passages with vivid realism and imagery, wreaking of smouldering ash and devastation. Underneath all of this, a symphonic cacophony of electric guitar mastery blisters across the stereophonic panning – underscoring a final megaphone-assisted message to the masses, which feels like a judgement day street preacher screaming to be heard above the carnage.
Do NOT let your curiosity stop at this new single alone, as it is only the lead to an ambitious, masterful 4-song concept EP built for the millennial age that is coming to you on July 5th. Hard-edged psychedelia, confronting modern mainstream propaganda with post-punk defiance, deliberate counts of both swagger and sweat, and an explosive genre-bending musical maturity to jumpstart their own revolution – Drug Hunt is poised to shake the Towers of Babylon to the ground all by themselves. The only question left is – are you in?