This heavy, raw and intense breed of dirty Southern rock-with undercurrents of both punk rock and a Lynyrd Skynyrd sort of sensibility-is decent. It isn't extraordinary, but if what I just described excites the musical side of your mind, you'll thoroughly enjoy In Tongues. And I'll even admit that I enjoyed it too, despite the fact that I dreaded being discovered listening to this in my bedroom after midnight. Being the introvert that I am, I'm not well-suited to raunchy, fuzzy guitar over pounding rhythms and aggressive singing. You'll more likely find me rocking slowly back and forth to the soul-soothing sounds of Built to Spill or Neil Young rather than head-banging to the orchestrated noise and fury of Drunk Horse. Being a guitarist, however, I was drawn in by the relatively skillful and creative guitar work on In Tongues. These guitarists are never content pounding away at simple power chords to match the fury of the drummer. Instead, the guitar work often soars far above the rest of the music, stealing the stage from par vocal work. I especially appreciated the slide guitar on the opening track, "Strange Transgressors." It isn't often that I hear slide guitar utilized against such harsh surroundings; it sounded out of place in a good way.
The guitar work on the spectacular finale to In Tongues redeemed earlier moments in the album which were a bit forgettable due to sophomoric singing and songwriting. No vocals find their way into the finale "Skydog," but the guitars please any guitarist hoping to be entertained and wowed by what a guitar can do in the right hands.