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Do to the Beast

4.6 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (14 April 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sub Pop
  • ASIN: B00IFS2LSI
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,898 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Product Description

Do To The Beast' is the first new album by The Afghan Whigs in over a decade and a half. Founded in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1988, the band has long stood out from its peers, with their savage, rapturous blend of hard rock, classic soul, and frontman Greg Dulli's searing angst and obsessions. The new album is both a homecoming - it marks their return to Sub Pop, for whom the Whigs were the first signing from outside the label's Northwest base - and a glimpse into the future of one of the most acclaimed bands of the past twenty five years. 'Do To The Beast' is an appropriately feral title for one of the most intense, cathartic records of Dulli's entire career. It adds fresh twists to The Afghan Whigs canon: there's the film noir storytelling of 'Black Love', the exuberance of '1965', the brutal introspection of 'Gentlemen'. However, the album exudes a galvanized musical spirit and rhythmic heft that suggest transcendence and hope amidst the bloodletting. Recorded in LA, New Orleans, Cincinnati, and Joshua Tree - a virtual map of the band's past and present homes, the album features Whigs co-founders Greg Dulli and John Curley, along with the core band of guitarists Dave Rosser and Jon Skibic, multi-instrumentalist Rick Nelson and drummer Cully Symington. Also featured are soul iconoclast Van Hunt, Mark McGuire (Emeralds), Johnny 'Natural' Nagera (Usher's musical director), Alain Johannes (Queens Of The Stone Age, Arctic Monkeys), Clay Tarver (Bullet LaVolta, Chavez), Dave Catching (QOTSA, Eagles of Death Metal), among others.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
When The Afghan Whigs disbanded around the turn of the millenium, I thought it was perhaps for the best. Having developed their sound from the churning soul tinged vitriol of Up In It and Congregation, through the wounded Gentleman, reaching their peak with Black Love. An album that has a permanent place in my top 10 for it's soulful, violent Bukowski prose and swooning musical peaks and troughs. 1965 was a bit of a step back from the brink, a good album but it had an impossible act to follow, after you produce your masterpiece what else can artists do but disappoint?
Take a 15 year break and make another masterpiece. I've enjoyed the Twilight Singers and The Gutter Twins but Greg Dulli seems to be at his best when with the Whigs. Parked Outside is the track that ushers us in to this new collection, punchily it establishes the themes of the album: sex, religion, suffering...it's smokey miasma, muggy production, evoking both Congregation and Black Love. It's followed by Matamoros, one of the few times when you can point at the musical influence of the intermediary years, electro arpeggios, fleshed out with muscular, spiky guitars. Everything on this album makes me happy...the driving drums, the gospel, the arabic scales that haven't been heard on a Whigs album for so long, the parts where Dulli sounds like Prince, the bass sound. The vitriol that didn't seem to be there at the end of their original run.
I didn't know what to make of Algiers, elegant falcetto driven lead single or Can Rova, seemingly underproduced violent second single but in context of their places on the album, these songs represent dark peaks of a record that sits alongside Black Love as something of it's equal.
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Format: Audio CD
When suspiciously "record studio"-like photos began surfacing on the Whigs Facebook page without much fanfare, I allowed myself to hope, and was extremely happy when "Do to the Beast" was announced. I'm a relatively new Whigs fan, getting into them through an interview with Brian Fallon of the Gaslight Anthem and buying Gentlemen back in 2011. As a result I haven't had quite the wait that the "first wave" fans have faced, but nonetheless, my anticipation was high for this album.

So does it stack up to my expectations? I have to say 90% yes. It's a great album, make no mistake. "Parked Outside" is one hell of an opener, marrying crunchy guitars and an almost-discordant cello to Greg's unmistakeable yowl. "Matomoros" follows this up with a typically funky guitar and a thunderous bass boom in the chorus that never fails to satisfy. Other highlights include crooning Western death-ballad "Algiers" and "Royal Cream" - which sounds bizarrely like Jimmy Eat World's delinquent chain-smoking older brother.

So why only four stars? (Four and a half really, but I can't give half stars).

Well, it's perhaps not surprising, but a significant part of the album sounds A LOT like Greg's other band, the Twilight Singers. For the most part this isn't a problem, as TS are a great band, but just sometimes in the more electronic parts of this album I found myself longing for the gritty, purely organic Whigs of yesteryear. The worst offender is probably "The Lottery" a shimmering track with electronic drums which just sounds too much like a reject from Dynamite Steps (it's probably the weakest track on the album which doesn't help).

Other than that minor gripe, and also a slight longing for a couple more hard rockers like the first two tracks, this is a great album.
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Format: MP3 Download Verified Purchase
Great comeback!

A fantastic album that hails the return of Afghan Whigs. They remain as relevant and fresh sounding as they did in their last album. An amazing album with several outstanding songs. My personal favourite from the album is Algiers, but Matamoros, Can Rova and Royal Cream join the ranks amongst classic Afghan Whigs tracks.

If you like the band, get it, a great addition to the catalogue. If you don't know them, this is a brilliant starting point and a fantastic introduction to a band that I believe deserves more attention.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Purchased this after seeing them on Later with Jools Holland... I remember seeing Greg Dulli on Later with Mark Lanegan as The Gutter Twins but did not realise he was the Afghan Whigs as well.

Great album with nary a duff track in sight but up for special mention are Matamoros, It Kills, Algiers and Royal Cream.

What I find most striking about Greg Dulli is that he is not a good singer in the conventional sense but as with other great vocalists
has that knack of getting under your skin. His vocals are also applied to some terrific tunes.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I got into the Afghan Whigs a bit late and via album '1965' which I adored. Through later incarnations as 'Twilight Singers' and collaborations with Mark Lanagan, I have continues my love affair with the sleazy and dark meanderings of Greg Dulli's psyche.
This album takes me back to that earlier Afghan Whigs' time and feels like a seamless 'next album'. Ignore the tendency to write the same song over and over, and the strained vocals on some tracks; this is a proper rock album to sit alongside your QOTSA collection.
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