It really is hard to not say something cool about the band Clutch. If you like rock n roll in 2015, it is almost mandatory to love this band. God damn, they are good! And the really killer thing, is that they keep getting better. I am fortunate to have been a fan of this band for almost twenty years and counting. I also, have most of their albums on vinyl, so this will be one of many features on the band Clutch.
In the nineties, it was pretty clear that Clutch's record label had no idea what to do with this blossoming band. At the time, they had a post, hardcore, stoner rock sound, which probably was hard to peg down in the corporate music structure of the day. This was the time period, where it was the last hurrah of the juggernaut record labels. Money was flying around everywhere, and they were sniffing for the next big thing. Clutch, was, and has always been, a slow burning band in terms of gaining popularity, and they were one of the last great rock bands to benefit from the touring support offered by major labels. The first time I saw them, they opened for Pantera on The Great Southern Trendkill tour. It was fucking awesome! The second time I saw them perform, they opened for Limp Bizkit! This was so strange, but they totally kicked ass anyway! To the Rap-Metal, Mall Rock fan of the day, this was an education! They played with literally, everyone! And it was a great idea in my book.
I thought that their nineties albums were all solid. But I must confess that I didn't really become a super fan, until their 2004 release "Blast Tyrant". This album was simply a fucking mind blower! For Clutch, it was next level shit! Musically speaking, the band really came full circle in terms of song writing and performance execution. The production on this release was better than ever, and a long with the artwork, all of these elements made Blast Tyrant their most cohesive and popular release at the time. This was also a time where the band started headlining their own shows more. The crowds were getting bigger and it was about time for these guys! I saw them on the Blast Tyrant tour at The House of Blues in Cleveland on December 8th 2004. It was a great show, but sadly it turned out to be the same night that Dimebag Darrell was shot and killed in Columbus Ohio. It was a great night for rock in Cleveland. And an epically tragic night in Columbus.