Artist: Poised as Giants
Poised as Giants are the kings of riffs. Brian Collins' muscular guitar recalls not only Nirvana-favorite Meat Puppets, but also Black Sabbath, "Refugee"-era Tom Petty, and Stone Temple Pilots.
And when these guitar leads link up to Chris Olcikas' rumble bass, as on "Dead Love" and "See Me Going Down," the effect is not unlike the Morello-Commerford connection that made Rage Against the Machine so special. But Poised as Giants is not de la Rocha rap: on a song like "Not This Time" (featuring another fine riff), Collins' lead vocal is closer akin to the blues-inspired grunge of STP's Scott Weiland.
Blind Eyes' standout track is "Surrender." After a revelatory riff, we get chunky guitar notes (with great tone) that set up Collins' bluesy vocal rather perfectly. Title track "Blind Eyes" finds Poised as Giants channeling contemporary blues rock of The Black Keys vintage. In fact, the Poised as Giants' songs are so full of fine fretting that a lesser band would try to spread the riffs of "So Far Gone" across three songs.
With Poised as Giants functioning as full-fledged riff machines, they've assumed the mantle once borne by Chicago greats, Urge Overkill.
*** The author of this review, Terry Cooper, plays the towla for the following band: http://youtu.be/tMS73-1kCr8