Tomahawk Anonymous

Tomahawk Anonymous
Mike Patton has long been acknowledged as one of the, if not the, most talented, boundary ignoring, prolific and challenging musical geniuses in music. Channelling his boundless creativity into numerous projects (i.e., Peeping Tom is his "pop” band, Fantômas his "metal” group, etc.), these self-imposed boxes are usually thought outside of, or discarded, post-haste. However, for his "rock” super-project, featuring Duane Denison (ex-Jesus Lizard) and John Stanier (Helmet, Battles), it’s not Patton’s impetus that drives Tomahawk on their third release into strange new realms but Denison’s. As the story goes, Denison was inspired after touring with Hank Williams III years ago, visiting numerous Indian reservations along the way, to research more "aggressive, spookier and kinetic” Native American music. The results find Tomahawk retaining and expanding all the inherent weirdness of their previous two releases, combining them with Denison’s "research” while sacrificing most of their "rock” factor. It’s a rather strange trip, at times, but it’s not totally bewildering for fans of Patton or Tomahawk, as songs like "Omaha Dance” sound like a combination of Ennio Morricone’s work on The Good, The Bad and The Ugly crossed with Faith No More circa Album of the Year, while others aren’t far removed from Patton’s collaborations with the Melvins, and Tomahawk’s past sonic signifiers are still identifiable. While there is nothing as immediate as "Rape This Day” or "God Hates a Coward,” Anonymous effortlessly incorporates and executes what could have been a terrible gimmick in lesser hands. (Ipecac)