Big Business Here Come the Waterworks

[Hydra Head; 2007]

Styles: dirge-heavy doom rock
Others: Sleep, Sabbath, super-early Pelican, Porn (the band), The Melvins

Indulge me for a moment, if you will, as I describe a scenario to you: You’re going on a blind date, and you’re SUPER stoked about meeting someone new. You sit in the restaurant and fidget until she arrives. You pull a chair out for her and hope she doesn’t notice the dew-drop beads of sweat all over your forehead. She’s wearing an amazing outfit. HOLY GOD, you think, I’ve really hit the number this time! She looks hot! You get all excited. You consider the possibility of skipping work the next day if things turn out like you think they might... but they don’t. Hey, no big deal! You get her number and ask to see her again. She assuages. BAM! All of a sudden your life has gone from being sexually empty — you’ve seen your roommates’ balls a few times but no poon — to being potentially hyper-rad.

You get dressed up for the second date, carefully ensuring you don’t wear the same stuff you wore to the first date, because that would be sloppy. You’re slick, see? Then she knocks on your door. You place your balled-up fist in your hand and put it in your mouth, clench, and open the door. She still looks hot, but there’s just one problem: She’s wearing the exact same outfit she wore on the first date. SHIT! It’s not that you’re all materialistic or anything; you just prefer variety. You were hoping she’d be wearing a new outfit that would give you a fresh visual perspective. Instead you’re watching a re-run... hell, you could do that at home! You start to wonder if she cares; if she did, she would have flipped the script a little bit, right?

Big Business are just like that girl. They’ve dolled their sound up to the hilt; clothed themselves in some average-to-decent tunes; carefully shaved, waxed and sculpted the dynamics of their performance. It dazzles you at first because you’re totally into doom/stoner-rock with riffs that rumble and bumble like a drunken brontasaurus. You dig The Melvins, Om, High On Fire, Cathedral, Kyuss, and the “Pulling Teeth” bass solo from Kill ‘em All. Most of all, you respect the FUCK out of their resumes — boasting of tenures in Murder City Devils and Karp. You’re totally ready for Big Business to rock your world like Katrina, Andrew, and Rita rolled into one (a.k.a. like an f’in hurricane).

But they wear the same outfit every day. Certain bands have made a living — even made their legacy — employing a similar approach. Simply put, The Ramones Big Business ain’t. Jared Warren excels as a bass-wielding frontman, but his Buzzo-esque voice grates by the time the only track with any variety (“Grounds for Divorce”) comes along at spot no. four. He also seems to sing in the exact same key throughout the entire record. I’ve heard scream-o bands with more pitch variations where vocals are concerned. Then you have Jared Warren; he’s an unconscious drummer, but his assured skin swipes are helplessly burried under all the blurry bass and vocals. As much as you’ll want to let Here Comes the Waterworks soak you in fuzz-metal redemption, Big Business’ problems with redundancy will leave you high and dry.

Most Read