Kristin Hersh’s latest project sees her returning to the kind of full-throated, churning rock music that characterised the best of the early Throwing Muses – and you can feel her sense of liberation in the thrilling music that her new band are producing. In short, this collection of six new songs is as direct, as vibrant and as fresh as anything she has yet recorded.
But don’t just take our word for it : the British press have been just as enthusiastic :
“That’ll be Kristin Hersh, rocking, quite literally, like a mother, in the company of Throwing Muses bassist Bernard Georges and drummer Rob Ahlers. Just to throw us off the scent of last year’s Muses reunion comes a mini-album of the most visceral, convincing and goddamn rockingest rock songs Hersh has written for years. She sounds reborn. These six songs put virtually everything released by the vanguard of the so-called New Rock Revolution (not to mention the whiney new Courtney Love album) to shame. A brutal, buzzing blizzard of vicious riffage with Hersh’s gorgeous blasted rasp at its centre, 50 Foot Wave is an entirely thrilling, utterly unexpected blast out of the blue.” (Uncut, 4/5)
“Although the world crossed its legs in frenzied anticipation of the Pixies reunion, only the most deluded mentalist is seriously considering the possibility that Kim Deal and Black Francis (are we allowed to call him that again?) have patched it up enough to make new music of the calibre of their late-’80s peak. On the other hand, there’s some alumni of the 4AD school of indie who never lost it. Take Kristin Hersh: her album last year with Throwing Muses doggedly refused to revisit past glories and instead shot off in a fatastic new direction – and as if that wasn’t enough, now this mother of four has formed a new Californian band that rocks with a fury Courtney Love would flog her entire stash of OxyContin for, were it not a totally legal prescription pharmaceutical available from her doctor and all that. There’s none of the artistic trappings of middle-age on serrated emotional thunderstorms such as ‘Dog Days'; Hersh plays her shrieking wind-tunnel guitar all punked-up and vicious, and drummer Rob Ahlers hits the skins with the force and precision of a young Dave Grohl. The only problem is that six tracks just aren’t enough.” (NME, 8/10)
“Thanks to a Pixies reunion there’s been a scholarly interest in the sound of Boston in the late Eighties recently. A good time, then, to spare a thought for Kristin Hersh, erstwhile force of nature in Boston’s excellent Throwing Muses, and solo artist of many years standing. 50 Foot Wave is her new rock band and anyone nostalgic for the Hersh who raged and whirled while playing bold electric guitar will find much to savour here. Anyone unaware of Hersh’s heritage will probably just hear a great racket. It’s probably not intentional, but breakneck songs like ‘Long Painting’ or ‘Glory Weed’ have a Pixies-ish warp to them, the result of shared heritage rather than homage – Hersh would never need to borrw eccentricity. All told, a noisy and welcome surprise.” (The Observer)
The Fifty Foot Wave mini-album is available on CD or as a download from www.4ad.com.