The Messthetics: Instrumental chemistry

Fugazi’s rhythm section finds a new match in guitarist Anthony Pirog

Music Mesthetics11 1 09
Photo credit: Dischord Records
The Messthetics' self-titled debut.

“Mythomania,” the opening number from the Messthetics self-titled debut LP, is the perfect salvo for the trio anchored by drummer Brendan Canty and bass player Joe Lally of Washington D.C.’s post-hardcore legends Fugazi. The song lays the blueprint for a swelling instrumental excursion steeped in winding distortion. Guitarist Anthony Pirog balances the momentum as the music reaches dramatic and impressionistic peaks as it sways between an elegant simmer and a mammoth roar.

This is the first time that Canty and Lally have played together since Fugazi went on hiatus circa 2002. Time apart has only added depth to their shared musical instincts. And while the D.C. MVPs carry name recognition, they’ve found a match in Pirog’s soaring guitar melodies and clusters, which build to a massive crescendo in songs such as “Quantum Path” and “Crowds and Power.” A confluence of free jazz, spacious music, and the avant-garde are brought to a fine point in Pirog’s guitar parts. A history of crafting unorthodox but sophisticated compositions like those that define his 2014 album, Palo Colorado Dream, inform his playing style. Experimentation aside, the nine songs on the Messthetics LP bear the mark of a man who knows exactly what he wants to accomplish. Backed by the powerhouse of chemistry and history emanating from the drums and bass, the Messthetics have easily crafted one of the most uplifting instrumental rock albums of 2018 so far. ★★★☆☆

With Motherfucker, the Purkinje Shift, and Dead Now. $12-$15. 9 p.m. Fri., April 6. 529, 529 Flat Shoals Ave. 404-228-6769. www.529atlanta.com.

★★★★★ This album will change your life | ★★★★☆ A truly great album | ★★★☆☆ A solid effort, worth a listen | ★★☆☆☆ No thanks | ★☆☆☆☆ Don't bother


More By This Writer

Mark Rogers & Mary Byrne: 'I Line My Days Along Your Weight' Article

Monday November 3, 2014 10:54 am EST
Mark Rogers & Mary Byrne play the Earl tonight (Mon., Nov. 3), with Love Me Till My Heart Stops and Moses Nesh. | more...

Order of the Owl returns with new drummer, new label Article

Tuesday November 18, 2014 05:44 pm EST
Order of the Owl returns to 529's hallowed stage Nov. 19, this time with new drummer Dwayne Jones (Demonaut, Sourvein) in-tow. | more...

10 essential albums from the outer reaches of Skinny Puppy's universe Article

Friday December 5, 2014 07:21 pm EST
A primer that looks at cEvin Key and Nivek Ogre’s other offerings. | more...

DJ Lord>2MP: A call for sanity in a rat-eat-rat world Article

Monday December 15, 2014 09:58 am EST
The album is a heavy-duty social, political, and cultural manifesto that draws from the same sense of crisis that spawned Public Enemy's Welcome to the Terrordome."" | more...

ATL NYE: Where you need to be on the eve of 2015 Article

Tuesday December 30, 2014 11:13 am EST
Looking for a good place to ring in 2015? Here's a quick round up of Atlanta's best New Year's Eve shows. | more...
Search for more by Chad Radford