[sic] Magazine

White Manna – Live Frequencies

Some bands just can’t get it together on stage while others fail to translate their live energy to record. The rarest of creatures, White Manna manage to be the best of both worlds. Their run of excellent studio material is bettered only by always having an extra gear on tour. All 79 minutes of Live Frequencies captures the Californians’ first foray into Europe in 2013 (recorded both at Stengade and Le Kalif) and the two superb soundboard takes of “Evil” are worth the entrance fee alone, their killer choruses revving like a super-charged biker-bar brawl. And, in general, the bootleg atmosphere of the recording can’t help but beam you straight back to those locked-in k-holes at Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia, the band’s every-intensifying swagger swirling together with bloodshot solos.

The drawn-out Kalif version of Dune Worship favourite “X Ray” is particularly noteworthy, sounding like a super-stoned Ripley Johnson trying to negotiate his way out of a desert maze, the track’s slo-mo groove giving way to G-force rock that drags at the cheeks. With a trippy Stengade counterpoint, it’s just one of three pairs of intense tracks that allow for geeky games of spot the difference. Taken from the self-titled LP, the bombastic “Sweet Jesus” couplet, for example, strut a fine line of war-mongering hedonism. Standing alone on the other hand, the monolithic “I’m Comin’ Home” revels in its hard-rocking guitars. It’s just a pity really you have to get up and flip this mother for the exit signs are not well lit on this ride.

~Live Frequencies is released September 29th 2014 via Cardinal Fuzz.~