Basses Loaded

In the continued pursuit of evolving along the sludge-metal spectrum, the Melvins have zigged and zagged around trends and genre death knells, operating as arbiters of an effortless relevancy that endears them to legions. On Basses Loaded, the band takes on six (!) bass players to round out a collection of sometimes doomy, sometimes riff-heavy rock that amounts to another cool, funny collection of rawness in the band’s already bloated catalog of sound. Drummer Dale Crover moves to four-string on the plodding “Beer Hippie,” while Red Kross/OFF! bassist Steve McDonald offers a more nuanced melodicism on his efforts for album opener “The Decay of Lying” and a cover of the Beatles classic “I Want to Tell You.” Nirvana’s Krist Novoselic turns up on the absurd lo-fi pop tune “Maybe I’m Amused,” while similarly whimsical appearances come from Butthole Surfers’ JD Pinkus, Big Business’ Jared Warren and Mr. Bungle’s Trevor Dunn rounding out the record. The whole baseball analogy thing is capped off with a fun 8-bit cover of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”