MUSK is the new flesh. Or at least what's secreted from the glands located under the skin. Frontman Rob Fletcher is a the last guy in the world you'd think had pheromones—I mean, they might work on him, but his voice is definitely in the “let's get the fuck away from this guy” category, with his undeniable ability to growl, spit, shriek, and wretch as the band attacks. The drummer Brendan Leonard is a total can basher and the bass player John Laux is sublime. I mean, he's not even there at times, but he is like the whispers of forced air you heard when you were listening to Tical on wet that one time. Like, is that really there? It feels like it's been there forever. The weird thing about MUSK is that on top of all this maligned beauty—is that what you call something that sounds like the six movies John Saxon made in Italy that nobody except the biggest creeps in the world know about? A Beefheartian blues lurch juxtaposed against that lost eighties pigfuck clangor? Where was I? Oh yeah, Chris Owen, the guitar player, makes it bleed reverb everywhere, as if his amp had a heart to be stabbed, but it's just a cone about to rupture. His leads give off a sick, dusty twang, pained as if in their death throes—which is saying something because the guy looks like the dad from The Family Circus. Anyway, each dying twitch—every belligerent throb—was captured by engineer Chris Woodhouse (Oh Sees, Fuzz, Ty Segall, Intelligence). Whether working the muggy Southern Gothic angle or treading knee deep in NYC’s pungent sewers, all routes on MUSK lead to a cold, shuddering finality.