Monday, February 11, 2019
Chout - Dogwater
I was an enormous fan of a tortured artist from the 90’s. This man's voice was the catalyst for tears, joy, and a lifelong fascination with his persona. That man is Layne Staley, and he's been dead for too long; a shining example of why heroin destroys lives, and takes legendary performers from us much too early.
Fast forward from that tragic death all the way to February 2019. I was scrolling through my news feed on Facebook, and happened upon a Metal Injection article; touting the emergence of a band whose singer could be the reincarnation of Layne. That bands name is Chout, and their stellar release from last August, called Dogwater, is the subject of this review.
The first track we hear on Dogwater is a grunge inspired riff fest, and it is called “Seasons”. The most striking aspect of this song is how much vocalist Brendan Maier puts into his performance. It is very apparent to me, and most who hear him, that he has studied Layne Staley. As a matter of fact he was in an excellent AIC tribute band at one point, so his chops are well honed in this style. Musically, this is straight 90s inspired riffing, and it brings me back to 1995; back when I was almost 20 years old, and jamming in my own bands.
“Restless Heart” gets my vote for best song on the record. It gives me chills as I listen to it. The music is slower, the riffs seem to crush everything in their path, and the vocals are god damned amazing. While continuing to conjure the spirit of Layne, they also show a side that is all Brendan.
Another fantastic number, “All Has Been Done”, will bring to mind the Jar of Flies ep. The very cool thing is that, while influenced by that great ep, Chout also injects their own personality into the tune. It's fresh, yet familiar, and my second favorite track on this album.
One of the heaviest tunes in the record is called “Thin Ice”, and the guitar tones are raw and aggressive. This is the track where this Chicago based groups own sound is most felt. This is another solid effort on an album full of killer music!!
Chout may get some hate for sounding like Alice in Chains, but it's unwarranted hate. Just listen to this incredible album with an open mind, and realize that the voice of a generation has sprung from death's icy grasp; bringing back an iconic sound while remaining fresh and original. Dogwater is a fantastic fucking record, so head on over to their Bandcamp at, Chout, and give it the attention it deserves!!