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Bugs On the Bluefish

Gallery of Mites

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Album Review

Not a band in the traditional sense, but a true musical collective with a "darker side of the '60s" sort of vibe, the Gallery of Mites (they boast an amazing ten official members) read like a who's who of New Jersey's stoner rock royalty. Spearheaded by Monster Magnet drummer Jon Kleinman alongside that band's sixth member, original vocalist and minister of visual propaganda (i.e., lights and psychedelic slide show) Tim Cronin, the group's Bugs on the Bluefish debut is a textbook example of studio downtime made useful. Although nowhere near as metallic (not at all, actually) as many of the participants' main bands, Gallery of Mites arguably packs just as much punch, thanks to superb retro-rock nuggets like the driving, organ-enhanced "Exploded View," the soul-thumping "Headless Body, Topless Bar," and the handclap-embellished "X's for Eyes." Each of these and many other fine cuts on hand here offer serious guitar enthusiasts (and if you don't like guitar, don't even bother with this record) the added thrill of enjoying dazzling fret-board pyrotechnics from some of the underground's most talented six-string heroes, including Solace's Tommy Southard and Atomic Bitchwax/Monster Magnet's unassuming genius, Ed Mundell. Providing further proof of the album's quality and cohesion, "100 Days (Heron)," the only track featuring guest vocals from Kyuss legend John Garcia, not only sticks out like a sore thumb stylistically, it honestly doesn't do the surrounding material justice. And in case you were wondering, the delightfully named space rock jam "A Man Called S**t" reportedly features contributions by every single member of the group (barring Garcia). Realizing how difficult this must have been to pull off only adds respect to the excellent collection of loose, groovy rock & roll featured on Bugs on the Bluefish.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active:

The sonic conglomerate known as Gallery of Mites came into being in the year 2001, when Monster Magnet drummer Jon Kleiman, together with original Magnet vocalist and longtime visual propaganda specialist Tim Cronin, decided they needed a few extra hands in the studio. Also deeming a new set of songs far too aggressive for use by their garage rock outfit the Ribeye Brothers and realizing neither of them could play lead guitar all that well, they began inviting fellow veterans of New Jersey's prolific...
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Bugs On the Bluefish, Gallery of Mites
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