In anticipation of his debut solo album, The Fickle Finger of Fate, founding drummer of The Melvins Dale Crover has released the new song “Hillbilly Math.” Stereogum premiered the song early Monday. As you might expect from Crover, the song is very drum-centric, with his booming shuffles at the center of this stomping rocker, giving off shades of Zep’s “When the Levee Breaks” in their cavernous echoing. The gut-punch guitars lay out a rollicking tune pitched halfway between country and blues, but still feature just enough crackling fuzz to make Melvins fans squeal with delight. Some octave pedal howling and chromatic tension from the six-strings builds toward the song’s climactic finale, with synthesizer oscillations adding a dash of weirdness that makes this song a hard rocking slab of quirky fun.
Commenting on the track, Crover told Stereogum: “‘Hillbilly Math’ is a Stones-y little number in G. I was thinking of the characters from Gummo and Deliverance when I wrote this.”
Hear the song in full below.
In addition to Crover, Toshi Kasai co-produced the album, slated for an early August release. In addition to drumming duties and vocals, Crover plays nearly all the instruments on the forthcoming record. Guest musicians include Redd Kross’ Steven McDonald, Altamont’s Dan Southwick and Crover’s daughter, Scarlett, who provides violin, percussion and vocals.
Though this is his first full-length album, he’s released several singles and EPs over the years. He also released an experimental 12-sided record entitled Skins this year in collaboration with lathe artist Mike Dixon, who helped him concoct a six-spindled disk with twelve short songs on it.
In addition to his solo endeavors, Crover has been active in his day job with the Melvins. Since their most recent album — 2016’s Basses Loaded — the band maintained the prolific pace that they’re known for by announcing reissues for Houdini, Stoner Witch, and Stag less than a fortnight later. Before the end of the month, they also released a music video for the song “Hideous Woman,” and appeared on the Cartoon Network show Uncle Grandpa.
Earlier this month, the group released the song “What’s Wrong with You” on their Soundcloud page.
Photo by Marv Watson.