Harvey Milk – Special Wishes

Harvey Milk
Special Wishes

Harvey Milk has been putting out music on and off for quite some time now. You’ll have to excuse me then, because their newest offering is serving as my introduction. From what information I’ve read about the band, their fan base is a cult-like one, anyways. Judging from the slow, chugging axe work and howling, scratchy vocals of the intro, I concluded Special Wishes would be an admirable work, but not my thing.

Consistency is one thing I cannot knock about this band. They have their sludgy Southern sound well paved from the get go, something the years have helped with I’m sure. They’re simultaneously too comfortable with their chosen style, and don’t really deviate from the stoned pacing over the album’s lifespan. My first impression from “I’ve Got a Love” was Unbroken on serious downers, but Harvey Milk is not a hardcore band, so comprehend that comparison with some imagination.

The song titles are all nice and abrupt, and in some cases serve as accurate portrayals. Power chord rips on “Crush Them All” dig a hole in your ears with each elongated blow. Also, “Instrumental” is no lie either (ha!). These guys know how to play heavy, and I love that, but it’s not an especially difficult task to accomplish.

Do I really embrace Harvey Milk after hearing Special Wishes as a whole? Not really. “Once in a While” might signal a clue as to why that is. The blatant classic rock nostalgia leads me to believe this would fit right into my collection if I was either a metalhead or obsessed with stoner rock in another life.