Thinning The Herd - Freedom From The KnownThere has been quite a bit of talk here on ThisIsNotAScene about the new record from Thinning the Herd, “Freedom From The Known”, released May 9, 2013. We were fortunate enough to get some thoughts on the album from founding vocalist/guitarist Gavin Spielman, and team up with Earsplit PR to have “Freedom From The Known” stream in its entirety right after its release. Since then, no one has done a proper review of the album. I guess that falls on me!

“Freedom…” starts out with a hard driving punk/rock jam, ‘Never Wanted’, which is chock full of crunchy guitar riffs, Soundgarden “Ultramega OK” like vocals, and a chugging rhythm section. With crunchy guitars and distorted bass, Thinning the Herd likes to settle into thick, mid-tempo grooves. Gavin Spielman’s guitar solos can get a little extended and flow into some almost psychedelic jams.

The bob-and-weaving ‘Rabbits’, a real stand out tune on the record, is an awesome example of this. Thinning can also really drag you through the muck with the back-and-forth tempo of the aptly titled ‘Sludge’, the drudgey ‘Dying Star’, and even sludgier ‘Path of Gold’. One song that strikes me as kind of odd is the instrumental ‘Gaikatt Mountain’. It is a cool song, but I am confused as to the reason for its inclusion. It does not seem to fit the overall flow of the record. ‘In Front of Me’ takes us out the way we came in, with another foot stomping jam.

“Freedom From The Known” was almost the album that never was. Gavin Spielman had to rebuild Thinning the Herd twice; once before recording the album, and once again after. This is probably why there is an overall feeling of perseverance throughout the record. Spielman definitely had to push through some difficulties to get this record out to us. I’m sure, including him, there are a lot of people that are glad he did.

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