Stoner Rock

Fu Manchu: Stoner Rock Isn't Just for Stoners Anymore (And Never Really Was)

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Rising out of the late-1980s Orange Country punk scene, Fu Manchu evolved by slowing the tempo (while retaining the intensity) and adding heavier elements. Instead of two-minute, 13-second thrashers with Hill screaming his vocals, the band allowed the songs some flow, adding lengthy guitar interludes, and spacey jams and "thickening" the sound in the manner of bands such as the Melvins, Helmet, Black Sabbath, and Soundgarden.

"[We went from] hardcore into slower, fuzzier stuff into more hardcore into both," Balch says. "Our songwriting has gotten better. We always try to find subtle things to add to a structure, so it's not just verse, chorus, verse, chorus. I still think the hardcore influence is there; it's just that we play those riffs way slower."

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Glenn BurnSilver
Contact: Glenn BurnSilver