Dog Of Panic - a collection of volume and force that catapults me back to my youth - a grumpy 14-year-old in a tattered Harley tank and dirty jeans cranking the stereo to damaging levels when the household authority is away. The brutality rattles my bones like a purposeful car accident, making me lose my grip on my pen until I regain my bearings and balance. The sound is a defiant gambit centered on a barren ivory salt flat, a whirling tempest overhead, gray blue black clouds splintered by lightning and flogged by a shrieking banshee cartwheeling in the wind. The air is cold, shredded by scraps of paper and the wings of ebony swallows, or are they falcons? Regardless, all that is not nailed down or rooted by audible rebellion is rolled and tossed like so many bingo balls in a cage, punctuated by icy droplets of rain fat and frustrated. The horizon stretched endlessly, with no sign of sun or unoccupied blue, but all threat of eternal authoritarianism lost or ignored for the sake of music. Intermission has ended - Vocals rocket into the sky to clip the pinions of once stoic vultures as a sudden dust devil kicks up in the frozen desert gale, the whirling sands growing dark and sensuous, shale-skinned beauties with long black hair in tattered gowns and blindfolds mingling with the music makers, undeterred by earthly distractions in their stubborn quest to break through the storm. "I want your skull" - a violent crack of electric sky and the girls are gone - the air heavy and still before a veritable sand blast of heat rushes over the wasteland, picking up the fractured flatness and manifesting into a skeletal myth turned tangible, but the band continues. "Admiral" - a beastly shriek escapes the phantasm as it rushes the stage like some manner of PCP-laden Juggernaut dust flying from its bones and a black determination in the eye sockets as it spirals. Defiance plunges through a gaping maw as the dragon dematerialized, a powdered sugar-sand defeat over the group, the only acknowledgment of its terrible once existence a beautiful triumphant scream from the shirtless rhythm angel behind the bass. A growling force, the wind now spiraling circles around this alien power. Craning upwards with a depthy-growth, buts of earthly detritus caught in their storm - cymbals adding cold flecks of sand, guitars driving the icy gale, the bass dregs up raw, heated brown earth, the vocals agitating and stirring this calamitous skyward soup. The desert in its entirety rushes towards this tornado, skidding across the crackled face of the earth to this raging concert. The tempest touches the storm head, folding heavy gray into the sound batter. Earth flies up as sky falls down, gravity cluster fucked beyond recognition. The cyclone dances round, drilling through the thundering ceiling and ripping a hole in the atmosphere itself, exposing the blazing obsidian sparkle of infinity, these howling dogs bathed at last in the glorious firelight of some distant sun.
- Erin Baker