by Eric Gagne (@thething_nh)
Milan MacAlevey has been kicking his own ass for years. He works tirelessly writing songs and getting the sound of Coke Weed physically manifested on this our plane of reality. He is a student of sound and execution, and it is so apparent in the band’s flawless delivery. He’s a diligent director and champion, and he drives the band with serious conviction. Mary Weaver is the band’s third full length, this one released by Beyond Beyond is Beyond. The Weed brings impeccable pedigree to a larger audience with this record. They’ve been skronking and grooving for years, with Nina D cooing and choogling her laconic tenor into the stoned frontal lobe of our collective brain. Every time I’ve seen them in concert, it has been a complete knockout punch; killer delivery of heartbreaking and/or stomping jams. They’re reminiscent of the Velvet Underground and Nico in that they drape themselves in the same animal skins; do the same midnight dances, the same poisons; breathe in the same existential fumes.
I spent some time on the road with Coke Weed a few years back, and at one point we found ourselves off the grid in Buels Gore Vermont. Milan was fighting a cold and I was of the opinion that diving into a small pond in mid-October could be beneficial. I was dead wrong unfortunately, but you couldn’t tell from their performances after that fateful dip. Throughout the day, he slept bundled up in the van, pounding cough drops and water. He’d slip that guitar on before their set and launch the band into dark hip hysterics, fireworks of powerful nonchalance, and a real screaming peak.
Mary Weaver feels a bit funkier and more playful than past entries in their discography. “The Chill” has Nina doing these wonderful yelps that make you want to dance. I can’t leave out the heavy surf vibe Coke Weed puts out there too; it’s a bit Cure, a bit American beach music at times, but this thread adds a cool glow to an already fantastic record. Dark rock and roll that makes you make that ‘something smells bad’ funky face. And don’t forget, no matter how much you love the tunes recorded, they rip live, even on the edge of hypothermic flu.