BareFuzz
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BareFuzz

Columbus, Ohio, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2017

Columbus, Ohio, United States
Established on Jan, 2017
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"BareFuzz - Half Way Down - Album Review"

Barefuzz has just been killing it recently, playing two sets at Summer Camp Music Festival and looking forward to a run of summer tour dates including a set at this year’s Comfest in Columbus. If you haven’t had the pleasure of catching a live show from this up-and-coming act, you might want to treat yourself to a small taste with their new EP Half Way Down. Released earlier this month, Half Way Down has been making waves in the Ohio jam community. It’s a solid step forward for a band looking to break through and make a name for itself in 2019.

A run through the jungle; it’s the scene set by Jason Wiehl’s soft starting bongos of the Barefuzz percussion section in “Falling Through.” Layering in more conventional drums from Derek Petrucci, guitars begin to join in, harmonizing and increasing the tempo of the jam with every note. The overlaying drums seem to drown out the constant hum of synth-like keys in the background. This opening tune to Half Way Down is the perfect way to ease your mind into the hypnotic jams that is Barefuzz. Short but sweet, fading in and out in less than 3 minutes, it’s just a taste of the deep jams tucked inside a live performance.

Dropping a heavy bassline, the slap style bass of “Lookin’ For a Bite” lays down the perfect platform for the dueling guitars from Andrew Maughan and Ryan Jones, a perfect backdrop for an international man of mystery movie. As the mysterious feelings continue to creep in through the waves of sound, the opening lyrics snap you right out of the spell and back into the tight groove. With a tad less guitar, focusing more on vocals, the song takes you for a cruise as its easy sounding, almost Southern rock, soothes your ear. As one guitarist chucks on his guitar filling the space between rhythm and vocals, the other slithers up the neck of his guitar filling the gap between words. Like any solid, improv-heavy band, Barefuzz leaves the perfect amount of space and time after the vocals to take it for a spin around the musical block. This deep jam takes you right back into that mysterious state of mind as the lead and rhythm guitar seem to dance with each other through a heavy wah-pedal and finger splitting guitar work. Some powerful chords bring it right back to the chorus as the band harmonizes on, “Hey, Looking for a bite!” acapella for the final touch.

While it is the shortest track on the EP, “Thru Infinity” may be the most compact. In under a minute and thirty seconds, the track highlights the extremely talented man behind the kit. To liken it with the early work of Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason during the Syd Barrett years would not be a far stretch. The drum work on this song sticks out above all else, that’s not something that comes out of my mind during a song too often.

Let me set the scene for you, actually I’ll let Barefuzz do it, it’s a Friday night in Texas and everybody’s hootin’ and hollerin’ for the smooth cowboy on stage ready to get rowdy. The drums seem to chug through the song behind the deep vocals from who must be the greatest spaghetti western villain of all time. “Concrete Cowboy” couldn’t have a more perfect name, the stone-cold Southern vocals complete the all-around sound created by the instruments. Barefuzz is the perfect example of how two guitarists can complement one another so well. As the song trails off into a jam, the guitars are interwoven and built upon each other with increasing speed exploding at the peak with drums and tambourine. The song slips back into the smooth groove that is led by the Concrete Cowboy’s vocals and ends with a bang.

Following the quick and constant tick of the hi-hat, “Next Man In Line” builds slowly, culminating in a ruckus of guitars. The two guitar system in Barefuzz works to perfection in this song as they work in tandem to build the energy on top of bongo-and-cymbal-heavy percussion. Another example of a deep jam harnessed in a live improv environment as the song softly fades in and out.

If you want to feel good, listen to “It’s All Right Here.” Close your eyes and let the warm tone of the guitar take you to a sandy beach with some drinks flowing, a mighty fine time. Try not to crack a smile and dance around your house while this tune fills the room. The feel good energy in this song is harnessed through the extremely catchy opening guitar riff of the song that immediately warms the soul. The soothing vocals bring you back down from the high of the riff, mixing your emotions before reminding you, “It’s All Right.” The lengthy guitar jam in this song hits so many heights before softly bringing it back to that beautifully warm opening riff and lyrics. Perfectly combining sound and lyrics of comfort, this song is a perfect place for Barefuzz to call a musical home, a safe haven to feel good. Once again the excellent guitar stylings take the song in new directions on an emotional rollercoaster. Some songs can grab you by the scruff of the neck and take you for a ride and this is certainly one of those.

Keep a cap on your head for the dark and psychedelic closing statement on “Half Way Down.” Beginning and ending with a synthesized voice-over only to be likened with that of Gollum, this is just a wonderful experiment in music sandwiched into an eerie intro/outro. As the song lifts you up and then sets you down like an out of body experience, it gives clarity to the name. This song is extra-terrestrial.

If you take a seat for the ride that is Barefuzz’s Half Way Down, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. The band expands its horizons with this album touching on a couple different styles of music and exploring the depths of their own creativity. If you like the taste you had in your mouth, check them out on Facebook and see the magic in action at a live show. Like most music, it only gets better in person so come see the guys and let them clear your head for a little while. - Weird Music


Discography

Half Way Down (Album) - July 2019
1.Falling Thru
2.Lookin' for a Bite
3.Thru Infinity 
4.Concrete Cowboy
5.Next Man in Line
6.It's All Right Here
7.Arrival

Extended Play (Album) - August 2018 
1. Fader 
2. Hell's Half Acre
3. Spirit of the Mountain Jam
4.Heavy Weather
5.Jazz
6.Cold Coffee
7.Strange Feelin 


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Bio

BareFuzz is a psychedelic rock fusion band from Columbus, Ohio. They seek to blend a wide array of genres and musical influences into their energetic and expansive live performances. Each time BareFuzz steps onto the stage, their goal is create a completely organic and unique musical experience for all in attendance. Smooth grooves, seamless transitions, and a heavy dose of improvisation can all be expected, along with so much more.

Band Members