Melvins mastermind Buzz Osborne has been churning out electrified sludge riffs since the early 80ies and to have him releasing an acoustic album is something that probably raised more than a few eyebrows.
Once you get over the initial surprise and manage to look past the steel string scrapings, you’ll find that he isn’t half-assing things here. Sure, it sounds like Alice In Chains unplugged at times but at least he lives up to his promise of having ‘no interest in sounding like a crappy version of James Taylor or a half-assed version of Woody Guthrie’. Instead we are treated to droning tunes like “Laid Back Walking” and “Drunken Baby” and tunes that show off Osborne’s weird sense of humor like “How I Became Offensive” and “Useless King Of The Punks”.
With 17 songs, “This Machine Kills Artists” does feel a bit bloated. It would’ve had more punch if they had left a couple of tunes out. Either way, “This Machine Kills Artists” shows that even without the volume knob turned all the way open, King Buzzo is a force to be reckoned with.