Slightly Stoopid’s latest release, Meanwhile…Back At The Lab is mesmerizing, embodying the California based group on all accounts. The 14-track album is packed with an array of dub, reggae and rock grooves that maintain a live energy from start to finish. Meanwhile…Back At The Lab will also kick off the band’s’ “Everything Is Awesome” summer tour from July 8 through mid-September, along with The Dirty Heads, The Expendables and Stick Figure.
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Although the record was released on June 30, sessions for the album began at the band’s home studio, ‘The Lab’ in late 2012. Chaotic and cluttered like the album art, each track on the record weaves you through the creativity of each band member.
Co-founders Kyle McDonald and Miles Doughty have taken the band and their listeners on a musical journey in search of new innovations to their progressive sound. With a full studio at their disposal, multi-instrumentalists McDonald and Doughty along with drummer Ryan Moran; percussionist Oguer Ocon; saxophonists Daniel Delacruz; keyboardist Paul Wolstencroft; trumpet/trombonist Andy Geib and unofficial eighth member Karl Denson (The Rolling Stones/Greyboy Allstars) on sax let their musical muses run wild.
The opening track “Dabbington” hits hard with a syncopated kick drum and a Head Hunter’s esque keyboard lick. Shakers, congas and percussion give the track body while doubled horn lines keep you hooked in the groove.
“The Version” drags, pulling you back into a deep dub-reggae drop three feel. Guitars, keys and percussion lay back behind the drums and vocals allowing the band to breathe.
By the third track, it would be hard to find a reason not to dig on Slightly Stoopid’s sheer versatility. Honing in on a different sound, “The Prophet” takes on an airy, kicked-back influence from the band’s Long Beach neighbors, Sublime.
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Other track favorites include “Come Around”; a heavy dub track that was inspired after Jerry Wonda of The Fugees engineered and impromptu session as the band came straight off a red-eye from their South American Tour.
“Rolling Stone” features heavy rock drums fused with bluesy harmonica and smooth lyrics all of which compliment and contrast each other – simply conversational and soulful. Karl Denson is prominently featured on the track – we premiered an alternate remix of “Rolling Stone”, which you can check out here.
Meanwhile…Back At The Lab was recorded on the band’s independent label, ‘The Lab’, as well as at Platinum Sound, NYC; Rivas Studios, L.A. and Mixdown Town LBC in Long Beach. On Tracks like “Life Rolls On” and “The Prophet” Skunk Records co-founder Michael Happoldt and Sublime drummer Marshall Goodman helped produce along with The Lab’s in-house ‘engineering maestro James Wisner.
All in all, Meanwhile… Back At The Lab is a quintessential offering from Slightly Stoopid. No doubt this will go down as one of the best releases in the band’s prolific catalog.
Meanwhile…Back At The Lab Track List
01 – Dabbington
02 – This Version
03 – The Prophet
04 – Hold It Down
05 – Fades Away
06 – Fuck You (Feat. Beardo)
07 – Time Won’t Wait
08 – Rolling Stone
09 – Guns In Paradise
10 – Come Around
11 – Call Me Crazy
12 – One Bright Day (Feat. Angela Hunte)
13 – Life Rolls On
14 – What Your Friends Say