If music must be judged (it must, it must, says the music reviewer), it should always be judged by the same criteria. That is, firstly, whether it achieves what it set out to achieve. Secondly is what it set out to achieve a good idea. Kicking Edgar has lashed themselves to the label “grunge infused psychedelic funk-punk,” I think Fever Dream is the sound of them fulfilling exactly that brief.
Grunge? Tick. – Incendiary guitars and scatter-gun, staccato drums.
Psychedelic? Affirmative. – There is something acid laced and other in the overall vibe and vision.
Funk? Yes, indeed. – Listen to the bassline groove and grind, and especially note the nod to Bootsie’s Groove Is In The Heart funkadelic strut in the break.
Punk? Okay. – Punk was always drenched in attitude, stance, and swagger…and Fever Dream is built on nothing, if not swagger, so I’ll give them that.
So, having done what they set out to do, is the mission worthy? Yes, it is. Rock music has been listless and lacking late. Alt-rock seems to have forgotten what it was ever trying to be an alternative to. Metal has buried itself under the weight of its own technical expectations and tiresome machismo. Most mainstream rock has become merely pop with one foot on the monitor. I would say that with all that is lacking in those quarters, Kicking Edgar’s mission is not only totally worthy but absolutely vital.