by WestCoast Weasel WestCoast Weasel
June 21, 2010

At times, being approached to review an upcoming band’s release can be daunting for a multitude of reasons.  Thankfully these boys made it easy.  Real easy.  Hailing from the heart of Alberta seems to have worked in their favor; we hear no left-coast synth saturation and no sign of starry east-coast eyes.  Swampy, outback rock n’ roll’s on the grill this eve.  They’re servin’ up a meaty main course with a side of southern home fries.  Drinks are on the house.

Organ leads the opening track “Johnny’s New Knees” moments before a double take is required to pin whose voice is heard.  Lou Reed? No.  Perhaps for a second.  David Wilcox?  Maybe slightly, (in an admirable way) but quickly the gent before us shows that he’s got more gruff than that beloved billy goat.  The voice is Colin Anthony and it’s truly his own.  Hearing the EP’s title Nuclear Medicine as lyrics (as opposed to lyrics and title) within the opening track is a nice touch.

As the story goes, Colin’s as big on late night whiskey soaks as he is on many cigarette smokes.  He’s sure to have been headfirst in a batch when he laid down his take heard on “Release the Archers”—collectively, the strongest musical output on the record.  His haunting howls in the forefront are backed by his spooky organ offerings along side his gang’s individual weaponry.  Roy Rhyno’s delicate, though rapid hi-hat quips act as a precursor to my favorite part of the song: his drumming, though most notably, the 180° tom fills.  Kudos to the man behind the kit as well as Brad Miller’s mixing job.  The drum sound overall on this release—but more specifically on this tune—is bang on.  Now, lest we forget that while Jonny did get his new knees, he’s got some fiery leads up his sleeve.  Jon Bontje’s guitar creeps and cries subtly until the final act where his guitar, a piano and skins all go full boar, equally feeding off one another, taking it right on home.

“Captive Audience” may captivate and remind said audience of the likes of The Doors (so I’ve already heard) and while I’d agree pleasingly, Anthony sounds even dirtier than a Morrison and Rhyno sounds a tad more like a Bonham than a Densmore.  Vocals aside, I hear homage to Josh Homme and company’s more recent works.  As heavy as it is, the soft puffs of piano at the end rounds off the cut both slowly and softly.

“As a promise to you / As a promise to you / Oh, I’m Comin’ back / Comin’ back for you” is heard throughout the final—and likely the best saved for last—track “Comin’ Back For You.” We’re left with an epic piano and guitar driven ballad with an eastern European, circus friendly, organ interlude.  While the breakdown may at first seem out of place, it only makes the return to the strongest chorus on the album all the more favorable.  Whoever it is that Colin’s coming back for, he best find her.  If not—thanks to the motives and desperation in his voice—I’m going to have to find her, myself.

With a solid production, and spot-on delivery both musically and vocally I can only wish there was more here to digest.  On the bright side, having it play out in less than twenty minutes only allows us to do it all over again…even sooner.  While the name these Barrington boys carry may say otherwise—they’re sure to go anywhere but south.

…Weasel Was Here

out of 5 weasels.

  1. Jonny’s New Knees
  2. Release The Archers
  3. Captive Audience
  4. Coming Back For You (FREE MP3)

Visit The Barrington Southwinds online:

Never trust a weasel. Support the artist and find out for yourself. encourages visiting The Barrington Southwinds online here to get your vermin hands on Nuclear Medicine.


One Response to “Turncoat Turntable 035: The Barrington Southwinds – Nuclear Medicine EP”

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