Clutch's third full length studio album `The Elephant Riders,' is an unquestionable classic record that was released back in 1998 and saw the band in an experimental mood, pushing the boundaries of the formula they designed on their previous record. Many Clutch fans will cite this as their favourite Clutch album, and with good reason.
Clutch themselves; if you are unfamiliar, are an eccentric collection of gifted musicians and unique songwriters who mix straight up hard rock music with all sorts of weird ideas to create dynamic and interesting music that is difficult to categorize and that varies from album to album.
Courtesy of the amazing front man Neil Fallon, the band feature some of the most remarkable and creative lyrics and vocal performances in the genre; mixing engaging story telling with humour, surrealism and obscure historical, political and pop culture references.
Musically; this album covers a lot of ground. There are still some fairly energetic oddball rock songs like on their previous effort, a lot more groove and funk, as well as some mid paced tracks full of guitar effects and some jazzier moments as well.
Stand out tracks include the absolutely storming and groove laiden Title Track, and the lyrically amazing and guitar effect filled `The Yeti,' as well as `The Soapmakers,' which is an utterly unique song which will put a smile on even the most serious listener's face.
Overall; this record is an utterly essential Clutch release full of live favourites that no fan should be without, if you have any interest in Clutch then you ought to pick up a copy.
on 4 March 2014
This is probably one of my favourite albums of all time from my favourite band, but the version I recieved is the standard version as opposed to the Japanese Import version with the 3 bonus tracks that came with it. Have sent it back to the supplier and they agreed to give me a full refund.
on 14 August 2001
There are very few words to describe such an album with such meaningless lyricall content. neil fallon's vocal are very unique (just the same as his lyrics) and that's a good thing as both stand out a mile. Taking a back step from the brutally diverse 'transational speedway leaugue' debut, and heading on in the same vein as it' predecesor 'clutch' E.R. holds together a more relaxed and easier to listen to batch of songs, fallon's insane vocal ramblings can't but help make you smile when you hear him talk about trying to find people he has met in past, and what has become of them. As your mood swings there is a track on this album to go with them, whether it's due to wanting your just rewards (ship of gold), what he eat's for dinner on special occasions (wishbone).Have you ever heard lyrics such as "should have been a lady, but i got a windchime"(dragonfly). The ridiculous words compare to just how amazing the band actually play. All the kids into nu-metal will hate this as it is about being able to play for yourself and finding your own groove. Having spoken to Neil Fallon personally i can assure he is as mad as his lyrics, but however never tries to upset or offend anyone. yeah ok he swears a couple of times but still you know when he does it, it just rolls off his tongue and you don't even realise what he's just said.Also it not obscene which in todays rock scene is such a blessing. Be very careful with this band because they truly are unapprechiated in their own time. In the future loads of people will be making blank claims as to having "loved clutch for years" so my advice is strike now before the iron even heats.Ok i know a few clutch fans are gonna read this and yes i know they been around for about a decade or just less. That just shows that now is their time. I feel that clutch are very much a jazz styled band just playing with alot of distortion and a madball of a vocalist...I own all the clutch albums although "pure rock fury" is undeniably a fantastically crafted piece of merchandise, It is not elephant riders. this is one of the albums i want played at my wake. My kids will hear it at least once a week whilst they grow up.This one truly is a keeper. And it will even keep the soapmakers "workin',workin'" do yourself one favour a lifetime and purchase this perfect piece of rock'n'roll from the maryland monsters.
on 4 January 2007
Clutchs third album is a foot stomping,riff tastic,groove laden beast that will inject itself to your mind after a listen or two,infectious is certainly one word to describe this album.
Opening up with the groove laced 'the elephant riders' it is clear that this album doesnt take itself too seriously and how could it when neil fallon,vocalist and chief song writer is at the helm,each song tells a story that does and doesnt make sense,the riffs flood this album and you will be forgiven for listening with a smile on your face,all the songs are great but special praise must be placed at the feet of the excellent song 'wishbone' which has such a killer riff and fallons vocals soar here and this is the stuff of the greats to be truthful,a brilliant album is another way of describing this.
on 8 October 2004
This album is truly evolution's finest hour. The rhythm and groove of every song buries itself deeply into the soul, and lyrically there is no other band as interesting and just downright awesome as Clutch.
If you favour rock as your personal guide through these torrid musical times, then i reccommend you whistle and give this box three knocks.
Smooth, thoughtful, rhythmic and vocally immense.
on 4 November 2014
A real grower. I can't believe the range of music this band has produced and their earlier stuff is completely different to their more recent stuff, but well worth exploring.
on 5 March 2016
This album is rougher than Clutch's later work such as Earth Rocker but the quality and unique sound is clearly there.
on 4 December 1999
The Elephant Riders is hard to describe. A little bit metal, a little bit US southern, a little bit funk, a whole lotta rock. Clutch is one of the best rock bands out there. They're smart, they can play their instruments, they're interesting, they try different things, and dammit, they rock your pants. A fun-tastic live show, too, if you get the chance to see them. I push this band on anyone who likes their music a bit on the loud side. They're one of the finest.
on 29 September 2008
I have no idea of what to make of this album. Don't get me wrong - entirely positive superlatives leap to mind - But Clutch are such a mixed bag! The lyrics are nuts, the musicianship brilliant, with the entire album delivered with energy from start to finish, you have driving funk, pounding classic metal, all out hard rock and some jazz noodles in places...why this band are not far more appreciated at this point in time, I have no idea. I think this is by far the most accessable album you could buy, definitely a good starting point if you've only just come across them and most definitely a keeper if you're already a fan.