Buzzsawyer | MUSIC: Homebrew | Indy Week
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Buzzsawyer 

Originally a four-piece (they're still looking for a rhythm guitar player), relocated Pittsburgh, Pa. rockers Buzzsawyer play punk-edged hard rock, the heavy, chord-driven kind played by pre-hair metal bands back before the genre became a parody of itself. This eight-song release (seven originals and a cover of the KISS classic, "Deuce") is a follow-up to their Rudos Records EP, Welcome to Thrillsville, and the Chapel Hill trio live up to the album's nickname, Cheap Voltage.

Vee (bass and lead vocals), Sloov (guitar) and Matt (drums) rip through their repertoire like mid-'70s Simmons, Stanley and company on crank (check out the track "There Ain't Much That I Won't Touch"), or Ace of Spades-era Motorhead (brought to mind by the driving drum beat of "Steven H. Christ"), which also features frontman Vee yelping along like Joey Keighley from seminal Vancouver punk band D.O.A. And while we're on "There Ain't Much ... ," the opening riff is pure Motor City Madman, taking off into a "Deuce"-type chord progression and later breaking down into a section that's gotta be inspired by Golden Earring's "Radar Love."

The disc dishes up chunky riffs courtesy of SG-slingin' (the preferred ax of Angus Young, mind you) guitarist Sloov, recalling the blue-collar punk of the non-post rock Chicago contingent (especially that of plumbers-cum-rockers Pegboy/Naked Raygun). Nevertheless, at some point while you're digging this disc, you will relive a fond memory of listening to Deep Purple In Rock, or of drunkenly pumping your fist in the air to the Nuge's opening chords for "Stranglehold." Buzzsawyer has mined some high-grade ore here, musically speakin', and forged a brand of rock that's top-grade U.S. steel. In other words, put your hard hat on before you crank this baby up.

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More by Angie Carlson

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