The Linus Pauling Quartet – Bag of Hammers


By Gruesome Greg

Great name for a heavy-rock album, eh? Linus and co offer up a decent blend of stoner grooves and bluesy psych rock on this one, eight tracks in a little over 40 minutes. Subject matter here ranges from Crom, God of the Storm to a woman who’s all outta weed as the tunes roll by like dusty tumbleweeds in the desert heat.

“Victory Gin” offers a lighter, janglier take on psych rock, but still delivers with a heavy chorus. Meanwhile, “Starchimp” has a bit of a bluesy, grungy feel, with some big, fat, overdriven garage-rock riffs whereas “Saving Throw” tosses in some drum-fills in its extended jam session that would make Neil Peart proud.

The jams continue with “Homonculus,” desert rock cool meets Skynyrd swagger, and the fuzzed-out “Stonebringer,” which brings home the bacon. The homestretch is where they delve into more psychedelic territory, letting loose as the album winds down.

Basically, if you like a little SRV sizzle with your thick Texas steak, and some hash brownies for desert before wandering in the desert… yeah, you’d probably dig this.

(Homeskool Records)


Sean Palmerston

Sean is the founder/publisher of; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.