The Shadracks are set to return with a new album on Damaged Goods in August. Check out the first taste, the single You Can’t Lose, right here.
Led by Huddie Shadrack (son of Billy Childish, who has also produced their new album), with The Horrors’ Rhys Webb on bass and drummer Elisa Abednego, the trio deal in exactly the type of stripped-back brash garage rock that you’d expect from their lineage. It cuts straight to the bone, no mess, no chaff. Pure crunching rattle rock ‘n’ roll. Fired up and brash, Huddie’s voice naturally sounding like his father’s, they bash out more of that great Medway garage sound. “It’s about wanting something you can’t get,” explains Huddie. “Chasing the unobtainable and finding yourself at the mercy of your pursuits.”
The band released their debut self-titled album in 2018 and are set to release their second, From Human Like Forms, this August on Damaged Goods. They have also confirmed their album release show at The Cave Club night (Moth Club, London) for Friday the 13th August. Tickets are on sale here.
Jess and the Ancient Ones, from Finland, play an intoxicating and wonderfully quirky mix, of psychedelic, garage rock and metal music that, on their latest album Vertigo, reaches a new creative peak. Louder Than War caught up with Thomas, the band’s guitarist and songwriter, to ask about their influences, the new album, and when we might see them play live again in the UK.
LTW: At Louder Than War, we really loved the new Jess and the Ancient Ones album, Vertigo. Thank you for taking the time to talk about the band and its music.
Thomas: Hi there! Oh, that’s nice to hear, thank you for the support.
LTW: How has everyone in the band been during the pandemic? We hope you are all well.
Thomas: We are all good thank you for asking. We’ve been living our lives back here. All of us are working or studying, and the current situation has not affected those areas in any major way. At least not yet. We have a lot of new material in pre-production at the moment, so we have been busy on that front while the world is locked.
LTW: The band was formed in 2010, can you say a little about how the band got together?
Thomas: A lust rose back then to write and play rock music. My past had been within the extreme metal scene, and I wanted to have a band that operates in a different field of music. Soon after that vision we had a line-up for Jess and the Ancient Ones. All the musicians were found nearby, and some were old friends. We recorded our first demo songs straight in the beginning of the band, and by that recording we got signed to Svart Records. It’s been a fantastic journey so far to say the least. The best is still yet to come!
LTW: In the music of Jess and the Ancient Ones, there seems to be a myriad of fascinating musical influences, including, for example, garage rock, metal, and even something of the west coast sound of The Doors and the Jefferson Airplane. What, for you, are the key musical influences on the band?
Thomas: We’re not afraid of change. I think many try to maintain their sound and style to please the masses, but we play selfishly to ourselves in a certain sense. The need and the want to explore is always there, and we follow that call without hesitation. All of us in Jess and the Ancient Ones are huge music lovers with a broad appetite for different bands, so I guess it also shows in our music.
I personally love the old nuggets movement and the primitive era of garage rock. Lately I have been listening to 90’s metal and alternative rock with the likes of Paradise Lost, Type O Negative, REM and Monster Magnet. Jazz, popcorn soul, funk and lo-fi trip-hop have also been on great consumption. Best newcomers that come to mind are Khruangbin and Boy Harsher. The subconscious reveals us through music.
LTW: On the new album Vertigo, the spoken samples and voiceovers, add a strangeness, that seems to echo the 1950s sci-fi/horror movie genre. Is that what you were aiming for?
Thomas: For me they add that small little extra kick to put the mood on. My advice to approach them is that one should think of them in their new surroundings. They become a part of different storylines and thus they transform to a new being. I love to take something old and give it a new meaning and a new surrounding. In a way it’s also almost like this sacred mission. To highlight these particular moments in history, and to evoke the feelings of yesterdays.
LTW: Summer Tripping Man, which was the first single off the album, is accompanied by a superb, animated video, created by Giuliano Di Girolamo. How did you team up, and what was the concept behind the video?
Thomas: I found him through Instagram, hah! The modern world shows its good sides sometimes I guess. There was an idea to have an old school styled animation video and so I started to look for videos behind certain hashtags. As soon as I saw Giuliano’s art, I knew that this is it. When he said he was interested in doing this, we had a minor discussion about the images that we wished to have on the video, and he proceeded from there on using also the lyrics of the song as a guideline. He is a great talent, and he did a huge job by doing it in the old school style. Much respect and love to him, a true artist.
LTW: Strange Earth Illusion, clocking in at over 11 minutes, feels to be Vertigo’s magnificent centrepiece, with all the key elements of the Jess and the Ancient Ones musical sound in place. Could you describe how the track was put together and recorded?
Thomas: Actually, we finished this track in the studio. We had the backbone ready before entering but we did some structural tweaks at the last moment. We recorded the base of the song live with all the main instruments and then added some layering guitars and keyboards here and there. The song had this cinematic feeling and we tried to follow its feel structurally. Not to return to repeat any parts except some verses.
LTW: I was lucky enough to see the band, when you played Glasgow in 2018, at the North of the Wall metal festival, I think perhaps your first ever UK gig. It was a great set that really won over the audience. What are your memories of the visit to Glasgow and the gig itself?
Thomas: I remember that evening very well. We enjoyed the beautiful city of Glasgow from the first glimpse to the last. The venue was really good, and the staff of the house were fantastic. They made us feel really welcome. We attacked with all guns blazing as we tried to match the intensity of the other acts, and the people seemed to enjoy it. We love being the odd bird in heavier festivals. After many hours of blasting, people are in need of something different, yet similar in spirit. I think we can offer you that. Also, the afterparty was great after the show, and we stayed there almost until the morning. The DJ was blasting out all of these great classics, and the beer was great! Met a lot of nice people there, and hope to travel back someday.
LTW: What touring plans do Jess and the Ancient Ones have, once touring is possible again? Might you return to the UK to play?
Thomas: The world seems to open up bit by bit, but we haven’t made any plans yet. We have a lot of new material in the pre-production phase, and we continue to work with them. Of course, if the opportunity comes to do shows, we’ll take it. We must come back to the UK to play. It’s been a wish of mine to do a row of shows in the UK, and someday it will happen. Take us to the nearest Helter Skelter please!
Best wishes to the UK! The home of the best bands in the world!
LTW: Thanks again for your time.
Listen to the brilliant Love Zombi from the Vertigo album here:
Blasting out like a souped-up Ford Cortina with attitude, Night Motor’s latest album, Fatal, smacks you in the face from the first song and doesn’t let up over the next 12. Distilling post-punk attitude with garage sensibilities, Fatal comes across like a mix between the Fall, early Pere Ubu and a smattering of The Seeds. It creates an exciting experience from Mawgan Lewis (guitar and backing vocals), Mat McIvor (vocals), Pete Knight (bass), Kelly Green (keyboards, theremin and backing vocals) and Jonny Hipgrave (drums and samples).
Blessed and Cursed, with its cynical singing and driving bass, comes across as post-punk from graffiti streets, no future minds and a bored greyness, with a curled lip at anything considered cool. Punk may have been about stealing cars but post-punk was about walking around and around under grey skies. The Milkman has a paranoid guitar sound like badly wired brain waves and vocals like a spasmodic, twitching, angry geek. Martyr starts with a drum beat that could be straight from Joy Division, with a heavy bassline and industrial noises. The drums and bass on Paradise give a tight backbeat for the guitar and theremin/keyboard space to drift and explore the spaces in between, a place where ‘dreams and fears and hope collide – another day in paradise’.
But, just as post-punk had many sides, there are also more sides to this band than post-punk.
White Witch starts with a Klaus Fluoride style bassline, a rockabilly beat with psychedelic guitar, and vocals like a crazed preacher on Speaker’s Corner. The sound of a theremin adds a spooky 60s feel. It could be a forgotten 60s garage classic brought up to date. There are the goth-tinged Deadpool, with its noir club beat, and Stone Age with a primitive beat reminiscent of Ausgang.
Life could be 80’s indie-pop that has a hint of the forgotten great band, Lowlife. Confessions is out and out punk with brittle guitar work and angry vocals just ‘screaming the blues’. Whilst Termination has vocals that are delivered in a rapping style over a Wire sounding beat. Album closer, Chloroform (a nod to the classic Strychnine?) has a perfect sixties garage sound and freaky sounds, man. Mat McIvor singing ‘Why don’t you just come upstairs?’ sounds perfectly creepy.
Fatal is a paranoid, tension-filled, slightly bleak, quirky post-punk, with 60’s garage, goth and pop thrown in to create a great album experience. If they’re as good live as they sound on record, then can’t wait to catch them live.
With me notoriously being a geek for Canadian punk rock, it always bothered me that I never really had a favorite punk band from Winnipeg. Then I got turned on to The Sorels, and it was all settled. Now with the arrival of Poison Suckers, I can say I have two favorite bands from Winnipeg! And there’s a connection: Poison Suckers are Joanne from The Sorels and her husband Joe from Fashion Bathers, Shitbots, etc. With this band, you get cool elements from both of these formidable talents. Poison Suckers don’t really sound like any of the aforementioned bands, but in listening to the duo’s debut EP you can totally sense Joanne’s love for girl groups and dirty glam rock and Joe’s fondness for blown-out lo-fi garage punk. Put it all together, and you’ve got a marriage made in heaven! Out now on Transistor 66 (on slime green vinyl, no less!), the four-song debut from Poison Suckers is an absolute treat for lovers of budget rock. It’s super lo-fi, but not in a shitty way. You could probably pass these songs off as the work of some forgotten garage band from 55 years ago! “Grain Alcohol” and “You Like Me” conjure some old school girl group magic with a rawness and budget fidelity that serve the songs completely. On “Take My Time”, the band tears into some down and dirty, riff-driven rock and roll featuring a powerhouse vocal from Joanne. And speaking of powerhouse vocals, Joanne brings it full force on the MC5-inspired scorcher “Stick Up”! If you like trashy rock and roll with soul, guts, and brilliant songwriting, you’ve got yourself a brand-new must-have record to chase down!
All year long, I’ve been counting the days until the release of Brad Marino’s second full-length album! The album’s first teaser single, “What Do You Know?”, was released in January. A second teaser, “Even The Score”, came out in March. This all led up to Looking For Trouble being perhaps my most highly anticipated album release of 2021. Well release day has finally arrived, and Looking For Trouble does not disappoint! Out today on CD on Rum Bar Records (with digital and vinyl releases from Spaghetty Town Records, Beluga Records, and Ghost Highway Recordings coming soon), Looking For Trouble is very much up to the tall task of topping Marino’s superb debut Extra Credit.
While Marino did enlist several talented friends (Craig Sala, Bobby Davis, Chris Barnard) to play on this release, he remains a veritable one-man band: playing guitar, bass, keyboards, and drums while producing and mixing the album himself. In classic Marino fashion, this is an album full of simple rock and roll songs with great lyrics and killer hooks. There aren’t many people who do it better! What I enjoy about this album in particular is that it features a great variety of songs. No two tracks sound the same. Marino touches on just about every sub-style of rock and roll that he’s ever been known for. That includes everything from twangy, Stonesy numbers (“Even the Score”) to stripped-down rootsy rockers (“Taillights Fade”) to upbeat British Invasion style pop hits (“Take Your Time”) to Ramones-inspired earworms (“To Bleed”) to top-notch surf rock instrumentals (“Tripwire”) to vintage Brad Marino shots of power poppin’ garage rock and roll (“Something For Nothing”). “Local Show” — which will strike a chord with anyone who has ever endured the struggles of trying to make it in a band — is one of Marino’s finest songs to date. Also included are new mixes of a couple of old favorites: “False Alarm” and “At Night”. When favorite artists of mine re-record old songs, I almost always find myself preferring the original versions. But I’ve got to hand it to Marino here: he managed to make both of these songs even better! These tracks bookend the album’s outstanding second side. You’ve got to love a record that finishes just as strong as it starts!
I love that Looking For Trouble is everything you could want from a Brad Marino album without being a copy of Extra Credit. Marino, who excels at blending no-nonsense rock and roll with catchy pop melodies, is very much in his element on this release. But the album also shows a progression in Marino’s artistry. It’s cool hearing him experimenting with new instruments (like slide guitar) and widening his stylistic repertoire. He shines not just as a songwriter but also as a singer and musician. And isn’t that the whole point of making solo records? Looking For Trouble is so stacked with great tunes that I’m having a hard time choosing a favorite. Whether I’m in the mood for something poppy, punky, or straight-up rocking, this album always hits the spot. If you’re looking for a modern-day example of what rock and roll is all about, it doesn’t get much better than this.
Jess and the Ancient Ones have delivered a psychedelic rock classic, full of great songs and an endearing musical strangeness
Jess and the Ancient Ones are a Finnish psychedelic rock band, with metal roots, that was formed in 2010. This reviewer was able to witness the band in full flight in 2018 at the North Of The Wall extreme metal festival, where they effortlessly won over the audience with a sparkling mix of metal and psychedelic rock influences. The latter influence resonant of those two iconic bands, the Doors and the Jefferson Airplane.
On their 4th album Vertigo, the band have further developed and deepened, in a very exciting way, the 1960s garage band sound and psychedelic rock influences in their music. Think of Blondie’s classic self-titled debut album for a sense of what they have achieved on this magnificent album.
Burning of the Velvet Fires opens the album with an intoxicating, and jaunty riff, and rhythms that dance all over the mix. Immediately apparent are Jess’s stunning vocals, effortlessly moving from a compelling and nuanced, story-telling tone, to a soaring bluesy lament, bringing together the west coast influences of the amazing Grace Slick from the Jefferson Airplane and the late, great Janis Joplin. A quirky mechanical singing of the chorus and journalistic voice-over mid song, add to the intriguing feeling of strangeness that echoes the 1950s sci-fi/horror movie genre, and permeates the whole album.
Continuing the theme, World Paranormal has a catchy, pop sensibility, with intersecting organ, rolling piano and indie rock guitars, setting the up-tempo pace. A slower, mid section is underpinned by a lovely, emotional timbre to the vocals, complemented by a gently flowing melodic guitar figure. The song charges to a breathless finish, with all the instruments seamlessly locked into the groove.
The second single from the album Love Zombi epitomises the fabulous sound the band are aiming at. The spooky keyboard opening, transitions into a guitar and electric piano led swing rhythm that is quite irresistible and very danceable. It has a fabulous sixties psychedelic sound, mixed with a raw and energetic, garage band musical attitude. Jess’s vocals are some of the best on album, with some quite wondrous, syncopated vocal phrasing, and some incredible, almost screamed, high notes.
Summer Tripping Man, which was the first single off the album, is accompanied by a superb animated video, created by Giuliano Di Girolamo, which really develops the song’s prophecy of doom theme. Its a classic three minute garage rock anthem. You can watch the video here
Strange Earth Illusion, clocking in at well over 11 minutes, is the album’s magnificent tour de force. The lovely initial melody picked out on the electric piano, has the feel of an eerie, movie soundtrack. It is succeeded by a heavier development of the melody on guitar which takes the track into doom metal territory. Jess completely inhabits the song with a vocal style that melds both metal and the blues. Part way through the song, the band shift up a gear, and create a sound that is close to how the Doors must have sounded in their early live sets at the Whisky a Go Go, giving the song a very evocative west coast sound. In the concluding section of the piece, rolling drums, chiming guitars and space rock keyboards are accompanied by an almost choral vocal. A final sensational guitar-led coda, accompanied by some great bass runs, enables Jess to completely go for the vocal, in the most wonderfully emotive and expressive way. As ever the 1950s style voice-over adds a beguiling quirkiness. You really must hear this track, a guarantee that you will be completely smitten with Jess and the Ancient Ones.
This is simply one of the best albums this reviewer has heard so far in 2021, with a great selection of songs written by guitarist Thomas Corpse. An upbeat and edgy musical treat.
Pandemos is the long-awaited debut album from Beebe Gallini — a band I’ve been exceptionally fond of going back to those ancient times of five years ago. The band recorded these songs in December 2019 strictly as demos. But then 2020 happened. Live shows and even proper band rehearsals were suddenly out of the question. Life gave Beebe Gallini lemons, and Beebe Gallini went ahead and made delicious lemonade! An album’s worth of demos were sent off to Geza X for mastering. And today, Pandemos releases on the mighty Rum Bar Records!
First thing’s first: Pandemos absolutely sounds like a “real” album. Sometimes “demo” translates to “rough” or “unfinished”, but in this case the rawness of the recordings gives them a live (and lively!) energy. The lineup for this particular album is Miss Georgia Peach on vocals and guitar, Amy Larson Pearson on bass and vocals, and Travis Ramin on drums and lead guitar. These tracks were originally recorded as a way to share material with new guitarist Monet Wong. Now the whole world gets to enjoy them!
What’s exciting to me is that I finally get to hear a large selection of original songs from Beebe Gallini. To this point, this band has been best known for its fantastic cover versions of garage and rock and roll songs from the ’60s. Pandemos certainly does not lack for crackling cover tunes. The band’s version of Randy and the Radiants’ 1965 Donna Weiss-penned single “My Way of Thinking” is rock and roll at its most joyful and electrifying. And after hearing the band’s take on the Bee Gees classic “To Love Somebody”, the only response my brain could muster was wow. But can these folks write originals to rival the covers? You bet they can! Pandemos features six songs written by Miss Georgia Peach and another three written by Amy Larson Pearson. Running the gamut from high energy garage rock (“Little Sister”) to glammy hard rock (“Mean Mama”) to hopped-up rhythm & blues (“Busy Izzy”) to straight-up red-hot rock and roll (“Danny”), these original songs fit in so well that you might suspect that they are covers! This is an album that builds on Beebe Gallini’s previous musical identity. Of course you can throw on this album once it’s safe to host your next garage rock house party. But I like how some of these songs reveal added dimensions to the Beebe Gallini experience. The heavy rocker “Bad Man” could almost be a Short Fuses song, while “Dusty” fully engages the band’s pop side. And I love the way the album ends, with the sweet & heartwarming “Poppington Station” flowing straight into the band’s thundering version of Roz Rogoff’s anthem of empathy and acceptance, “Nobody Loves the Hulk”.
Had Beebe Gallini chosen to sit on these ’19-’20 winter demos, we certainly would have gotten a debut album eventually. But no doubt the band played back these tracks and knew it already had an album the world would want to hear. And it certainly it didn’t hurt that the band had Geza X on hand to work his mastering magic! The old joke about a singer being so good that you would listen to them “sing the phone book” certainly applies to Miss Georgia Peach. But luckily, there was already an album’s worth of material in the can. I can’t imagine how big that Twin Cities phone book must be. It would probably take a box set to get all of that down on tape. Pandemos is a royal treat for fans of garage rock and rock and roll in general. All the kids are telling me that these tunes have a good beat and you can dance to ’em. Let us look forward to future recordings from Beebe Gallini’s current lineup and eventually live shows. In the meantime, be sure to check out the Pandemosrelease party event this Sunday night! And dig the amazing music video (embedded below) for “My Way of Thinking” created by Wendy Norton from Norton Video. If we ever need to explain rock and roll to visitors from another planet, this video will do the trick!
Melbourne’s BLOWERS’ debut self-titled deepens the needle in the garage-punk skin. A bestial blitzkrieg of proto-garage sonic-noise hostility; a motive to make your body move in ways sex or/in an electric chair could never. By Ryan Walker.
Nothing is figurative for these sick minds. It’s an album that recoils at the sight of itself. From an unstoppable succession of unholy, smoking openers which scream until the skin encasing our feeble skeleton ruptures; be it Ripped, Cut Throat, or Too Old For This Shit; there is an indubitable rawness, a rough-around-the-edges-ness; a twitchy, adolescent rage; so fast, it might catch fire at any moment. A literal ripping to pieces, a literal cutting of the throat, literally too old for any of this shit until, arrestingly distressed, compelling bleeding along the edge, exhaustion turns to existential rage.
Through a series of forged friendships, Kit Convict, singer, and guitarist from the group, says he group developed through playing with “each other through playing in the same scene, so I floated the idea of us all teaming up for some garage punk project and no one said no, so here we are”.
The band recorded the album themselves then decided to drop the whole thing onto an old, 80s Tascam 4-track recorder; before finally being mixed and mastered by Mikey Young of Total Control. “We used it because it was there – I had my 80s Tascam 4-track lying round collecting dust, so we just pulled together what tracks we’d recorded in the rehearsal room”.
A time capsule, like it’s been found 1,000 years from now.
Or like it’s been passed through 1,000 palms; played and replayed until the tape fades to an artifact of dark ribbon; a plastic shell implosion trophy, malignantly mangled as chewed up by a rabid sphinx, and auto-destructs in a delightful explosion of hissing-feedback.
A decision that surely contributes to the erratic, rotten, discordant, muffled, and muzzled vibe, everlastingly burning from within the album’s body. “We just pulled together what tracks we’d recorded in the rehearsal room on our zoom recorder, or mobile phones and dumped them straight onto the 4-track”.
Feedback throughout as a means to overthrow the government; comic book atom bombs dropped on both Detroit and San Antonio. A botched insertion of a razor-sharp but now essentially blunted fist of instruments into the core of one’s heart. “Think that no-frills lo-fi approach basically sums up our sound and attitude too”.
Eat It Up crashes through the cranium and drags our ankles through the floor by way of x-ray Ramones-pop melodies. No-frills and flesh-blender menace of Meteors or Misfits, Eater, and Reatards, Wipers and Crime, pushed to their extremes, over an edge, and pulled back again to where they unwillingly belong. Brilliantly utilizing the trio-tipped, poison-prongs of vocal-assaults from each escaped member, bubbling to the surface above a demolition of instruments-as-buildings crumbling below. Done so with a sweet, selfless gesture of pouring a bucket of sawdust onto a puddle of sick.
How does the pandemic fit into this? Without the lockdown, the record might not have been made. But luckily, the band had already done some tracking. “We’re a laidback band with no ambition outside of making rough and loud garage punk sounds that suit ourselves and our weird sense of humour”. Weird, for sure. Wicked, doubly so.
Waste of a Man walks along with the deathly living with a firing squad stare and a swagger that could flatten entire cities. Bass guitars with rockets for bollocks and drums which when deployed, turn the buildings around them into landfills of bricks and mortar. It’s garage at its most garage. Punk at its most punk. Sweat stuck to the skin, rock ‘n’ roll with its ribcage exposed, a screwdriver in the tube-amp, ablaze and bruising before your very eyes. Endearingly disturbed and charmingly damaged.
Hitman heaves into action like Pussy Galore’s Handshake; and exits through the window in under two minutes. Its brutal, bulletproof groove, in addition to Chainsaws bulldozer-chug of maniacal melodicism, viciously slashes through a concrete sea of annoyances and obstacles. Chainsaws which when wielded correctly create rhythms and textures and melodies like one ligament and eating into another; in the name of sadomasochistic love; in the name of disturbing a certain, demented nest primitive instinct to unleash, to initiate, to birth this agitated outburst of joyous, blistering guitar-dissonance.
Archenemy vs. superhero goofy-grooves from the likes of No One Cares or the Tasmanian whirlwind of Exterminate sizzles with their own hellish, jungle-blooded wreckage. Otherworldly and nightmarish, cockroach-on-skewer blues. Animated fragments of glam-gore guitar riffs walk away with missing body parts, loud-as-megaton bass walking in the opposite direction, toward the disaster with a busted lip and a smile on its face; sharply spinning helicopter propeller drums, swirl in the distance, devouring the last known traces of life within reach.
A bombardment of bubbling voices and ecstatic-instruments, erode with every crack and crunch of the chords, melting into one demented, stampeding mess. At odds with each other, manic and panicky representatives of their own hysterical opinions, their own problems, victims of their own distinct personality disorders; suggesting Let’s Mutate by the Triggers or All I Want/Saturday Nite The Spits. Always howling, screaming, a lethal surge toward the same end, with similar means of reach: guitar, bass, drums, 4-track, Dan Electros rigged with sticks of dynamite, bottomless goblets of beer, the closest gradations of proximity to each other in the rehearsal room with battery-acid sunshine and petroleum breath.
Like a mutilated, maximum R’n’B Who, and loose like deranged shapes of the shamanistic Stooges; Hate That Shit and Can’t Get Started jump and jive in a straitjacket. Mutilated with a microphone dangling from the ceiling as a target for all those inner torments and tumultuous frustrations that eat a piece of us all a little bit more each passing day. Simplicity is the key to catalyse the purest feeling. Feelings that find their way to the surface by every detonator riff and beat and bassline synchronised to the speeds of a city ablaze.
Hate That… in particular yields, a dark snarl bassline with demon-teeth, totally wired and requires medical attention before being certified insane. Can’t Get…is Poison Idea covering a 60s freakbeat group with snot on their sleeves and shit on their shoes. Chewing on freshly-shot, still-hot shell casings in place of bubblegum. Gories giving Wire’s Chairs Missing a makeover with a powder keg of guitars and bass and crude-oil vocal cords. The cheek of it. The speed of it. Like all good garage should…not overthink, but just snap and attack and stop and snap again. Utterly dazzles.
And to not overthink, but simply: to let rip. It is the sole key to keeping the ignition firmly alive when creating such a raucous explosion of consistent, cacophony where everything collides and everything shatters and everything is reassembled before the next tunes fire up again.
But maybe I’m overthinking it. Garage this poignant doesn’t require intellect to attach legs to its body. But a handful of tunes can come in handy to see it survive the trials of life outside. “Guitar, bass, vocals, drums, and a bag of songs I guess. We just play for our own enjoyment really – we like the sound we’ve created playing together and we don’t overthink it, Kit informs me. Therefore it doesn’t take much to execute such a genre. But a definite sense of enjoyment, and a definite belief in the strength of the songs, is often key to see them breathe to their fullest capacity.
Blow begins with elephantine drums which crumble mountains to lego blocks. A ceaseless charge of everything at once. A conundrum of thunderous drums holds a gun up to the head of guitars and bass, tied together in the same chair, trying to escape their fate by unhinging their own wrists. A screeching solo like something unholy, scratching the back of something keeling over with ludicrous stupor. Fresh from the reset, post-leukotomy lullaby and contains a breakdown, juddering, and shuffling and disappears shortly after to its own zombie-dancefloor garage-disco smoke.
The choice of selecting Mikey Young from fellow Melbourne post-punkers Total Control is a natural one: “He’s worked on plenty of our previous releases as well as similar bands in the scene, and understands where we’re coming from – we just handed him the 4-track with everything on it and let him do his thing”.
Perhaps his thing, like their thing, is an attraction to the competently crippled. Things left stained. Things left sullied in the bloody soil. Things left unscrewed. Things left simple. So simple they enable further surprises to reach the forefront upon repeated, attentive listens. Fully-functional, almost flawless, falling to the floor with the eyeballs rolling back to the bones. To Kill the Kool. The sweltering heat of down under digging into the skin of the track; their hellish, bare-bones instrumentation charging towards us unchained from the skin, merely a saggy sack on the floor behind them.
It works a treat. A sick treat.
This is an album of purposeful devolution, unadulterated imperfection. But by so brilliantly executing a deliberate return to something so lo-fi, it accelerates into remarkable territories of wholesomeness. Cheated into thinking it’s broken, but all the pieces blindingly connect.
A studio album disguised as a demo, as a live experiment in captivating the audible equivalent of when humankind returns to the hunter-gatherer sections of nomadic history with guitars in place of obsidian-tipped spears sprawling through the air, merciless with murder-coloured eyes. It’s a reminder of how less-is-more and how things can always be pushed into new sonic terrains with their own philosophical values and underlying principles from the streets at work: the lycanthropic and radioactive, the playful and the brainless, the furious and the indifferent.
I blink and it’s almost over. All adrenalised with twisted, mad daddy cramps attack and my brain turns to mayonnaise. My shoulders must have been ripped (raw) from their sockets as I find my arms on the floor beside me. A smouldering heap of twitching limbs with blood spurting out like someone has decapitated a tank of turbocharged eels. If you wish to share this sensation, listen to the new Blowers album.
From the sick minds of –
Kit Convict, Andrew Porter, Shannon Aswell, Pip McMullan.
Album Launch Gig – Tote Bandroom w/ Cutters, 17th April 2021.
We are now just seven weeks away from the release of Brad Marino’s new album Looking For Trouble! Ahead of this upcoming full-length release on Rum Bar Records, Spaghetty Town Records, Beluga Records, and Ghost Highway Recordings, Marino has given us another sneak peak with his new single “Even The Score”. Backed by his Connection bandmates Craig Sala and Bobby Davis, Marino delivers the goods on this twangy mid-tempo rocker. The cool blend of Marino’s slide guitar and Davis’s acoustic guitar gives this tune a country rock tinge that brings to mind peak-era Rolling Stones. And Marino’s lyrics are fantastic has always. “Well you can keep trying to dig my grave/I got a head start already” is gonna be a hard line to top in 2021! You can grab a download of “Even the Score” for $1 from Bandcamp or stream it on Spotify. What a killer tune! I am so pumped for the full album!
Well, what do we have here? A new single from Brad Marino? Well that’s always a cause for celebration! “What Do You Know?” is the first teaser for Marino’s new album Looking For Trouble – due out this spring on Rum Bar Records, Spaghetty Town Records, Beluga Records, and Ghost Highway Recordings! It has been almost two years since Marino released his brilliant solo debut long player Extra Credit. And if “What Do You Know?” is any indication, he just might top himself with Looking For Trouble! Backing Marino on this track is a crack unit comprised of a couple of his bandmates from The Connection (Craig Sala on drums and Bobby Davis on guitar) along with the legendary Chris “B-Face” Barnard on bass. “What Do You Know?” meets at the intersection of straight-forward rock and roll and the poppier side of the Ramones – which has always been a sweet spot for Marino. In my fantasy world where millions of people still buy rock and roll records, this tune is a hit! If you dig rockin’ two-minute pop songs, you need to be all over Looking For Trouble – and every other record that Brad Marino has ever been a part of!