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When It Rains..It Pours

Gulch - When It Rains..It Pours ©1999 Gulchworks Enterprises
1. Legend
2. The Second
3. When It Rains It Pours
4. Venom Of A Thousand Snakes
5. Steppin' On Your Toes
6. Full Throttle / Rendered Insignificant
7. Black Sheep
8. Me
9. Like A Man
10. You Won't Change Me

Hailing from Kansas, Gulch is a hybrid of quite a few influences, from early 90s grunge to Black Sabbath with a healthy understanding of rock'n'roll swagger in between. The result of their efforts is an hour long disc called When It Rains...It Pours, which so happens to be a quite solid effort. While casting aside some of the more cliche aspects of grunge, but retaining the lower end, dirtier tones, Gulch brews up some very nifty songwriting. Singer/guitarist Dean Book has a decent voice that remains in mid-range, with occasional growls, and often reminds me of Chris Cornell's non-screeching vocals. The two guitarists in Gulch do an excellent job of varying up their playing so that often they are doing two different, but complementary things. The leads throughout work very nicely within the songs. Probably the best example of their guitar interplay comes on the instrumental "Full Throttle", which grooves with the best of them. The melodies throughout are catchy and strong, particularly on "Steppin' on Your Toes" or "Venom of a Thousand Snakes". They also cover Black Sabbath's "You Won't Change Me" very convincingly.

When It Rains...It Pours is a quite decent heavy rock record that gives the listener more than a handful of good songs. Gulch may not be in the realm of "great" but they do their sound justice and give the listener a fair share of good tunes. In today's rock world of posturing and insipid rockstar outfits, it is refreshing to hear a band attempt to do nothing more than rock with heaviness. Recommended, by all means, if you dig heavy rock music.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 10/2000

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Enemy Of Me

Gulch - Enemy Of Me ©2001 Gulchworks Enterprises
1. I Am
2. Quarters
3. Say What You Will
4. Bed Of Roses
5. Gathering The Courage (to Become A Coward)
6. Song Of Self-pity
7. Grand Finale
8. Enemy Of Me

Gulch are quietly going to become Kansas' best kept secret. The band, featuring two members of former Century Media artist Hostility, had a very solid and enjoyable debut with 1999's When it Rains...It Pours and now has followed it up with yet another rock solid effort entitled Enemy of Me. Gulch hasn't strayed very far from what made the first album work. Their strategy is very simple and one more heavy rock bands should consider: Gulch excels at good songwriting. Each of the songs feature strong sense of a dark melody, good guitar interplay, heavy crunch and a sense of honesty with the lyrics. The sound is reminiscient of the better aspects of grunge mixed with Black Sabbath and a slight, slight sense of pop to give it a catchy appeal underneath the heavy rock. For an independent band, Gulch apparently has access to a good studio since the sound quality is very good here. Those who may have searched out the first record will definitely want to excavate this one. For the interested, Gulch offers an alternative to the forced angst heavy rock boy bands that are heard on the radio. Hopefully this record will find them some deserved attention.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 12/2001

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