Currently Digging: Primus – Green Naugahyde

Twelve years is a long time to wait for a new proper Primus album. Trust me, I know. It was 1999, and I was in middle school, when the boys dropped their last full-length Antipop and went on a creative hiatus. They reunited many times, once even putting out a new EP, the highly underrated Animals Should Not Try to Act Like People. And Les Claypool kept busy with his many solo projects. But now that they’re finally back with fresh material, let me tell you…it’s so great to have Primus back.

Green Naugahyde picks up right where the boys left off, if you pretend the Brown Album, and replacement drummer Brian “Brain” Mantia, never happened. The album successfully accomplishes what Anitpop tried with mixed results – a back-to-basics glory days record. So no, there’s nothing progressive here. “Eternal Consumption Engine” is reminiscent of Tales From the Punchbowl, specifically “Space Farm.” “Jilly’s On Smack” features the gloom and doom of Pork Soda. “Lee Van Cleef” is “Ballad of Bodacious” Part 2. “Last Salmon Man” could’ve been a Frizzle Fry or Sailing the Seas of Cheese highlight.

But it doesn’t really matter once you get back in the groove; the return of original drummer Jay Lane (who left before Primus even recorded their first album) has reignited a creative spark in the trio. Ler’s wail complements Les’ signature popping and slapping, and Jay’s presence makes it abundantly clear the guys are having fun again. And the best part? After all these years, Primus still sucks.

Listen to Green Naugahyde on Spotify.

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