Loose, ever-changing and largely improvised
Rhyton’s self-titled debut, like any psychedelic jam record worth its salt, pushes its guitar solos to the front. The album hangs on the guitar proficiency of Dave Shuford, who spends the better part of 30 minutes meandering across the fret board. What that means, however, is that Jimy SeiTang’s (Psychic Ills) wandering bass lines and Spencer Herbst’s freeform drums usually take a backseat to Shuford’s loose, largely improvised riffs. Thankfully, the man is quite good. In five songs, Shuford establishes a fluid, fried-out guitar sound. There are hiccups in their flow – “Pontian Grave” has a clunky tempo shift where they sound less than tight – so it’s refreshing when they shift gears from 10-minute guitar solos to experiments in texture. On “Dale Odaliski,” they layer some harsh buzzing sounds over eerie, unidentifiable noise and minimal percussion. It’s a nice counterbalance to the psych jam of “Shank Raids” and a welcome cool down from the guitar heroics.