Meat Puppets Rise To Your Knees

Meat Puppets Rise To Your Knees

Once again, the reunion of a seminal American indie band brings with it high expectations that were never there when they were actually together. In the case of the Meat Puppets, the miracle is that bassist Cris Kirkwood is even alive after years of drug abuse, so anything remotely approaching the hazy brilliance of Meat Puppets II or Up On The Sun is welcome. Thankfully, guitarist/vocalist Curt Kirkwood still has a sure hand when it comes to these matters, and Rise To Your Knees strongly delivers in the acid-drenched Americana department. Songs like "On The Rise” and "Radio Moth” are amongst the best they’ve ever done and in general, the album shows just how far ahead of their time they were. The connection to Nirvana (see MTV Unplugged if you’ve forgotten) was probably the worst thing that could have happened to them. The Meat Puppets surely had more in common with the alt-country/power pop movements that followed grunge, and in the wide-open indie world of ’07 Rise To Your Knees easily holds its own with releases from My Morning Jacket and M. Ward, who themselves owe a little to the Meat Puppets’ original sound. This is a welcome return. (Anodyne)