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Dead Meadow [USA, Matador Records]
Dead Meadow's unique marriage of Sabbath riffs, dreamy layers of guitar-fuzz bliss, and singer Jason Simon's high-pitched melodic croon have won over psychedelic pop/rock and stoner rock fans alike. Although the band's members met while attending all-ages shows in and around Washington, D.C.'s punk/indie scene, the trio draws more of its sound from such classic rock legends as Pink Floyd and Black Sabbath. The trio formed in the fall of 1998 out of the ashes of local indie rock bands the Impossible 5 and Coulour, with singer/guitarist Simon, bassist Steve Kille, and drummer Mark Laughlin. The three members set out to fuse their love of early-'70s hard rock and '60s psychedelia with their love of fantasy and horror writers J.R.R. Tolkien and H.P. Lovecraft.