Brooklyn-based prog-rockers Gone Quite Mad begin their new track “All the Building Blocks” with dexterous guitar licks and a bustling rhythm section touching on jazz and hints of jazz fusion. The vocal incorporation – somewhat meek but melodically playful – reminds me of Dave Matthews’ approach at first, before expanding into a more Josh Homme-like intensity. The eruption in distortion around 01:25 is a nice roadway toward the more infectious second half, where the vocals increase in intensity over thunderous guitar riffs. The guitars are extremely charismatic throughout the track, culminating in the instrument stealing much of the show from 02:00 to 03:00 — a great moment that again reminds me of Homme’s guitar work. The vocals are all over the place – from understated ballad form in the beginning to almost metal-raising intensity toward the end – and that may turn some less-than-ambitious listeners off, but I find the delivery refreshing and constantly invigorating.
The track is off Gone Quite Mad’s upcoming Star Ride EP, out sometime in December. I’m looking forward to hearing what this talented group has in store. Their influences – from Hendrix and Led Zep to Primus and The Raconteurs – are on enjoyable display in addition to their own creativity.