Sweet Nothing - 2003 - 57 minutes

No more drummer jokes. In a former life, Nebula's Eddie Glass used to bash the tubs for West Coast outfit Olivelawn. When they split, he started messing around with a guitar; five years later, he ended up better on it than he ever was on the drums. And like any good guitar anti-hero, Glass can fool you into thinking riffs are his trademark - until he switches to wild and wandering solos which say there's nothing he couldn't play.

Glass' Nebula are one of these cult bands who really shouldn't be a cult band. Long-shackled with the 'stoner rock' tag, 'Atomic Ritual' shows a band trying to move away from what's expected of them but still determined that everyone should tag along.

Producer Chris Goss was at the controls for Queens of the Stone Age's 'Songs for the Deaf', and while there's nothing as catchy here as 'No-One Knows' or 'Go With the Flow', he helps Nebula trace their lineage right back to the original power trios and infuse more subtle touches like keyboards and handclaps along the way.

For getting lost in a groove and then finally finding their way out, Nebula are up with the best of them. If the Black Rebel Motorcycle Club can generate so much attention for trying to do the same thing, there's no reason why Nebula shouldn't be doing interviews from dawn to dusk.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: Atomic Ritual - So it Goes - Carpe Diem - More - The Beast - Out of Your Head - The Way to Venus - Paradise Engineer - Electric Synapse - Strange Human - Fin