L7 — Bricks Are Heavy (review)

L7 — Bricks Are Heavy album cover Album · 1992 · Heavy Alternative Rock Buy this album from MMA partners
5/5 ·
Unitron
L7 - Bricks are Heavy

"Bricks are Heavy" is the third studio album by grunge/punk/heavy metal band L7. Starting out as mainly a punk rock band with some heavy edges, L7 became one of the leading bands in the grunge scene by the time they released "Bricks are Heavy". However, in recent years, they've seemed to have lost a lot of their popularity which is a shame. Personally, this is easily a grunge classic.

Combining the heavy metal of bands like Motorhead and Girlschool with classic punk rock into a punchy aggressive grunge sound, L7 is easily one of the most metal-oriented grunge bands to my ears along with Soundgarden and Alice in Chains. The album mostly got popular due to the radio-friendly 'Pretend We're Dead', which I personally find to be the weakest on the album. I find the strongest songs to be the heaviest ones as the album opens up with one of my favorite tracks, 'Wargasm', which begins with a classic-sounding metal riff. Most of the album has a great balance of fast punk-metal tracks and slower and more punchy songs like 'Scrap' and 'Diet Pill'. The songs of the latter really slither along and pound the riffs into your head. The former also get stuck in your head especially with the spit-fire speed of 'This Ain't Pleasure' and 'Mr. Integrity', which are probably my favorites on the album. The latter has some interesting tribal percussion that actually fits nicely.

Guitarists Donita Sparks and Suzi Gardner and bassist Jennifer Finch all contribute lead vocals on the album, and they all perfectly fit the music they play. They all have aggressive sometimes snarl-y vocals, which is perfect for punk-y heavy metal and grunge. Jennifer Finch especially gives a great vocal performance on the slow melancholy 'One More Thing'. Gardner and Sparks both really have a snarl to their vocals, especially in the last three songs on the album. I personally have a difficult time not banging my head to the combination of punk-infused metal riffs and Gardner's take-no-bullshit vocal attack in 'This Ain't Pleasure'.

Overall, "Bricks are Heavy" is definitely an essential grunge album along with other classics like "Dirt" and "BadMotorFinger". However, "Bricks are Heavy" is an album I highly recommend to any fans of heavier punk, grunge, and metal. If you enjoy any of those three genres, do yourself a favor and check it out. Hope you found this review helpful.

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