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Giant Sand: proVISIONS

Music  |  Reviews
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Giant Sand: <em>proVISIONS</em>
More shadows and mirages from desert rock’s central shaman

American deserts spawn rich and convoluted musical chains. In the same way that the tangled Masters of Reality/Queens of the Stone Age/Desert Sessions/Kyuss clique corkscrews through the heart of hard rock, the Friends of Dean Martinez/Calexico/Giant Sand family tree entraps the live roots of modern Americana. Sixteen albums in, Howe Gelb’s visions are darker and still subtler than those of his musical cousins. With a rasp that often strangely resembles Shawn Mullins, Gelb’s raps are cooler than a caved gila monster’s stomach scales. Often hushed and challenging, his greatest device remains the tactical use of open space, delineated sharply by skeletal guitars and the loose insinuation of movement, as limber basslines sneak through “Muck Machine” and “The New Romance of Falling.”

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