Pentagram - Show ‘Em How
Black Widow Records
Stoner/Doom Rock
10 songs (45:03)
Release year: 2004
Reviewed by Jeff

Pentagram is one of America's oldest doom/stoner rock bands to date, officially forming in 1971 . Their early influences include bands like Blue Cheer, Frost, The Groundhogs, Stray and Sir Lord Baltimore, but their sound is very close to that of Black Sabbath. Pentagram released numerous singles in the 70's but didn't record their first full length album until 1985.

"Show' Em How" is a newly recorded Pentagram album that was just released this past June. The line up consists of Mike Smail (Cathedral, Penance - Drums), Adam Heinzmann (Internal Void, Bass), Kelly Carmichael (Internal Void, Guitars) and of course the legendary Bobby Liebling (all vocals). Seven of the ten tracks are updated, beefed up versions of previously released material; material from the 70's era Pentagram recorded with much better production. Most of the original versions can be found on albums like "First Daze Here - The Vintage Collection", "First Daze Here - Too" and the "Human Hurricane" compilation. The CD includes a 16 page, glossy booklet with pictures and lyrics.

Most of Pentagram's material from the 80's (read my Pentagram review for the "Turn To Stone" compilation) is much more doomy and evil sounding at times. Before even knowing that "Show' Em How" had a mix of new tracks and re-recorded classics, I noticed right away that somehow Pentagram was able to form a bridge between their 70's era sound and that of the 80's. The songs sounded more bluesy and stoned out with slow, sludgy riffs like their music of the early 70's, yet retaining some of the doomy feel and power of their 80's sound as well. However, because they mix those two era's, I feel the album can be some what inconsistent and trippy at times. A new song like "Elektra Glide" is as Black Sabbath as one can get. Then you have an older song like "Starlady", which is from the 70's and more along the lines of Blue Cheer.

The over all musicianship, production and recording is very good but I'm not too crazy about the vocals. They seem much too bluesy and whiney and not evil or haunting enough. My only other complaints are that I wish Pentagram had written an album of all original material from start to finish and kept it sounding more like their 80's material like that on "Turn To Stone". Still, some of you may like what this album has to offer and it does have it's moments.

Break out a joint or a big fat doobie. Once you smoke it, maybe you'll hear something or see something different than I did and maybe even like it more than me.

Killing Songs :
Wheel of Fortune, Elektra Glide, City Romance, Show ‘Em How
Jeff quoted 66 / 100
Other albums by Pentagram that we have reviewed:
Pentagram - Pentagram [aka Relentless] reviewed by Andy and quoted CLASSIC
Pentagram - Turn To Stone reviewed by Jeff and quoted no quote
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