ALBUM REVIEW: Clutch – Sunrise On Slaughter Beach

Clutch, the irrepressible quartet from Maryland, America have just graced our ears with a new record Sunrise On Slaughter Beach (Weathermarker) – their thirteenth record, coming four years after Book Of Bad Decisions. It is unmistakably a Clutch album, full of hearty riffs and deft turns of phrase, but it is a shorter and more varied one than its predecessor.

Despite its mere thirty-four minutes in length, they pack a lot in, with the first single and opening track ‘Red Alert (Boss Metal Zone)’ a fast and furious slab of sci-fi-inspired rock with a Blade Runner-influenced music video to boot. That and ‘We Strive for Excellence’ are good ways in – the latter is a taut rocker bristling with energy and tales of an exuberant childhood sung with force by Neil Fallon. Then there are the slower numbers – the thick groove and heavily laden guitar of ‘Slaughter Beach’, with its fierce, slow burner of a chorus, and the sludgy, stoner friendly ‘Nosferatu Madre’ with its Black Sabbath-like chugging riff.


Sunrise On Slaughter Beach is a densely packed album, and definitely one that rewards repeat visits. Be it the moody and atmospheric track ‘Mercy Brown’, the longest one here at over five minutes, or the woozy, miasma like psychedelia of ‘Skeletons on Mars’ – it is an eclectic, deftly woven record with a keen restless spirit. Then, right after ‘Skeletons…’ is ‘Three Golden Horns’, an empathic earworm warning us about the corrupting power of Jazz music. The relaxed ‘Jackhammer Our Names’, with its tribal drum beat and drawn out melodies, ends the record on a suitably left-field note.

With stoner, psychedelic, hard rock and atmospheric elements Clutch’s thirteenth album is a varied one that while short on run-time is not short on content. Once again the old adage is proven true, that there is no such thing as a bad Clutch record.

Buy the album here:


8 / 10