FM Bats - Everybody Out... Shark in the Water (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

FM Bats

Everybody Out... Shark in the Water (2005)

Vinyl Dog (TKO)

There's no way that this was recorded in the 2005. That was the first thing I thought upon listening to FM Bats' Everybody Out...Shark in the Water. This retro rock album, full of blues influence, sounds like it was recorded before anyone had ever even heard of Led Zeppelin.

Singer Todd Jacobs' howling vocal delivery mixed with the blues rock stylings of guitarist Orlando Sanchez is a formidable combination. The catch here is that only two of the songs are longer than a minute-fifty seconds, bringing the album total time under ten. The swagger infused into this dirty, gritty rock and roll is as undeniable as the fuzz emanating from my speakers. Even in the extremely short duration of these seven tracks, and the minimal instrumentation used to achieve their goals, they have a way of getting their point strongly across. Through the bouncy blues riffs of "Old Man's Glory, Young Man's Blues," you can find a band that's undeniably brimming and ready to explode. If the old-time blues grooves don't get your foot tapping, I really doubt there's much that will. The choppy, jagged, knee jerk riffing really fits the feel of things. "There's Only One Captain on This Ship" has a much more deep, bass driven groove, but it doesn't have much time to expand because the song is over in a meager 43 seconds. The slower pace is short lived, however, as all the swagger and attitude from the first three songs returns full force in the last three.

Quite the interesting spin on the garage rock revival of recent years, this effort from the FM Bats serves as a quick but effective departure. The band wears their influences proudly on their shoulder, and their attitude is clearly noticeable amidst the dissonance and howling vocals. I can't imagine any scenario where you do not have 9 minutes to spare, so there's no reason why you can't give this as listen, or five.