SUNDAY

With former Faith No More/Mr. Bungle frontman Mike Patton on vocals and ex-members of Cows, the Jesus Lizard, and the Melvins backing him up, Tomahawk has all the makings of a noise-rock supergroup. So how come I’m so underwhelmed by Tomahawk’s sophomore effort, Mit Gas? Well, maybe it’s just me, but there’s something generic-sounding about the whole affair. These guys give the impression they wouldn’t mind selling some records—which is natural enough—but what I found enchanting about Cows was not that they wouldn’t compromise but that, by gum, they couldn’t have even if they’d wanted to. That said, Mit Gas tracks such as “Harlem Clowns”—which incorporates found vocals into an ominous drone to evoke a really nasty tumble into a K-hole—and “Aktion 13F14″—which sets Patton’s spoken vocals against a weird western guitar before dissolving into noise—are freaky enough even for me. And the quiet, Spanish-flavored “Desastre Natural” is such a knuckleball in Patton’s usual arsenal of screaming beanballs that one can’t help but swing at it and miss. Still, there’s something off-putting about Tomahawk’s settling for the tried and true: Every time I hear “Birdsong”—which opens promisingly enough, with some truly foreboding guitar feedback—turn into a rehashed 9-year-old Fugazi tune, I want to hang my head and cry. Tomahawk plays with the Melvins and Dälek at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, May 25, at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $18. (202) 432-7328. (Michael Little)

More from WCP