Pull by Sons of Alpha Centauri

Release date: March 28, 2024
Label: Exile On Mainstream Records

Sons of Alpha Centauri is no stranger to collaborations and since 2007s instrumental juggernaut debut the band has shared many split releases leading up to second album Continuum in 20118. The collaboration that really grabbed me followed on the 2021 album Push featuring Mitch Wheeler from Will Haven and the indomitable Jonah Matranga of Far and onelinedrawing. It was an album that I greatly enjoyed as it mixed the classic style of Far with the original groove of Sons of Alpha Centauri early foundations. It feels extremely lucky that 2024 will bring a second edition of this collaboration with Pull. This is for all those who miss Far but wouldn’t want to watch someone try and replicate Water & Solutions, Pull is a great album full of fresh nostalgia without plagiarism.

It feels unfair to focus on Far but I did not use the word indomitable lightly. Without the work of Marlon King on guitar and Nick Hannon on bass, Jonah wouldn’t have the base to stretch out on his soaring choruses or gritty verse delivery as he does so beautifully in the title track ‘Pull’. The texture and weight of the bass and guitars is wondrous in creating epic songs and that’s evident from the off on opener ‘Ephemeral’. The note the guitar slides into as Jonah stretches the calls of “Ephemeral, we all are…” gets the hairs standing on both arms and back of neck.

It would also be lazy to say this is Jonah at his best, personally this is the aspect of Jonah’s vocals I enjoy the most in his vast repertoire and he is always at his best anyway! I love hearing the vocals exercising over blaring riffs as the ride cymbal is getting attention and the bass takes a platform it is so often overshadowed from and Pull is loaded with those moments. The musical approach of King and Hannon is still based in the sounds of the bands founding which is evident in it’s collaborations with members of Kyuss, ISIS and Karma to Burn. There is a real sense of a stoner discovering the late 90s Sacramento scene and just having to combine them.

The pace and drive is certainly imminent from those two genres with ‘Final Passage’ and ‘The Ways We Were’ being further examples of these two factions uniting. When you add in the beauty of Mitch Wheelers drumming it just strengthens the bond of everything in each of those sounds. With ‘Tetanus Blades’ and ‘Doomed’ the band slows right down giving a beautiful balance to the album and a taste of making measured yet weighty tracks with ‘Doomed’ particular threatening to explode but showing restraint as Jonah muses “they’re a liar, a fucking liar”.

The final, non musical, aspect that makes the project so great is the attention to detail with the physical offerings. Vinyl comes with a CD in full artwork slipcase, there is always a personal touch and a real feeling of interaction. It is like that feeling of discovering a weird band from the other side of the country in the early days of the internet before Facebook. Sons of Alpha Centauri has delivered another beautiful album, presented immaculately and offering a feast for all the senses. I will be overjoyed if we do see more from these wonderfully talented people.

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