Home Read Albums Of The Week: Datura4 | Neanderthal Jam

Albums Of The Week: Datura4 | Neanderthal Jam

The veteran Aussie garage-rockers prove evolution is overrated with their latest throwback collection of hypnotic grooves, blues-rock riffs and psychedelic jams.

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “West Australian boogie masters Datura4 have returned with their fifth album Neanderthal Jam. Fronted by Dom Mariani of legendary Oz garage rockers The Stems, Neanderthal Jam is packed with new tracks of psychedelicised blues and full-tilt heavy rock that were jammed out and recorded at their favourite south-west farmhouse studio.

Having already released four acclaimed albums on Alive Naturalsound RecordsDemon Blues (2015), Hairy Mountain (2016), Blessed is the Boogie (2019) and West Coast Highway Cosmic (2020) — Neanderthal Jam sees them building upon and going beyond on another diverse collection of tastefully crafted songs.”

Album opener Going Back to Hoonsville gets things started with a relentless and pounding swing to get your hot wheels on. The jam is well and truly underway, and so the boogie gets heavy pursuing futile love in an inner sanctum on Secret Society until the joyous organ groove and positive message of Open the Line invites us to dance to the music.

Bad Times digs in on their Oz rock roots with a groove that the Tatts (aka Rose Tattoo) would be proud of. Black Speakers and title track keep the jams cooking with Bob Patient’s keyboard playing prowess on display proving what a welcome addition he has been to the band. The acoustic prelude that is Hold My Life leads things into a pummelling boogie riff on Worried Man’s Boogie and sets the scene for personal concerns about a world and the times we find ourselves in. Drummer Warren (Wazza) Hall thumps out the beat to Black and Purple on full-throttle rocker Digging My Own Grave and we meet the witch doctor, who takes us for a ride on the bayou with the rhythmic Fish Fry until we get back on the open road with the epic sun-kissed West Coast closer Drive-By Island.

Originating in 2009 out of the port city of Fremantle, Western Australia — regarded as one of the most isolated cities in the world — Datura4 can be best described as a ballsy return to full-tilt boogie and blues with their own original spin on things. Since their inception Datura4 have established an impressive live reputation, opening up for the legendary ZZ Top, Little Steven and the Disciples of Soul, The Pretty Things, The Hoodoo Gurus, New Zealand guitar legend Kevin Borich, Endless Boogie, Tumbleweed, X and You Am I.”