Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Screaming Kids "Hasto Luego Mi Amor"

(Crazy Love Records 2017)

Le Bruit Des Anges
Encore Un Soir
Le Fossoyeur
Hasta Luego Mi Amor
Prends Le Comme Ca Vient
Ton Ame En Peine
A 4 Dans La BM
Tes Magies
Petit Chaperon Rouge

Waaaait a minute...Screaming "Kids"? These boys are taking the piss. It's been 27 years since their first album saw the light of day on Nervous Records. Well I suppose like the rest of us in the psychobilly world they probably have the mental age of 12 so I'll gloss over that. So what are they like now? I prefer em now. I can't understand a word they're singing (see song titles) (my French teacher would be so proud) but then again I have trouble understanding psychobilly when sang in English! Straddling the lines between power rockabilly and psychobilly with some fine vocals it reminds me a bit of their fellow countrymen The Lucky Devils. It's more than evident that the lads haven't left their instruments in the attic for the past 27 years as there's some top notch playing to be heard. All instruments seem to ricochet off one and other. There's passion in the playing and indeed the singing. Petit Chaperon Rouge (Little Red Riding Hood) isn't a cover of the old Sam The Sham favourite but is a Kids original and finishes out the album in such a way that you want to go back and listen to it all over again. Instant classic that song! Once again 2017 just seems to offer up more and more stellar releases. Out now for your wallet-emptying pleasure on Crazy Love on both vinyl and CD. You know you want it...
The O'Prez

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Wreck "The Nosferatu"

(Crazy Love Records 2017)

The Nosferatu
The Day The Earth Stood Still

While the rest of the psychobilly world is off in Pineda sunning their pasty arses I'm stuck here in overcast Ireland wiping mine. But that's not a bad thing exactly. For you see, such was my excitement upon receiving the new teaser-single from everyone's soon-to-be favourite band The Wreck, that I immediately shat in my lace panties...I mean...boxer shorts. Yes, that's it. Boxer shorts. *crickets* ...But anyway, there's been a lot of media attention regarding this band, a bit of a super-group really if you care to read their bio on their Facebook page. So they're not just a Johnny-Come-Lately outfit. Do they live up to the hype though? Put it this way, I fuckin' love this two-shantied-shite-inducing disc-o-delights! Now from what I can garner from Crazy Love is that it's a limited edition release...one copy with each order of the forthcoming album. If the rest of the album maintains the quality of the two songs on offer here then I think it's going to be a contender for the Hellacious Harmonies album of the year and there's plenty of stiff competition so far. Apart from the pristinely-produced psychobilly beats, what I especially love is the vocals. They have somewhat of a new wave tonality to them. For my money their impending album is going to be exemplary. Let's just hope it doesn't get pirated....pirated...did you see what I did there? Feck off then!
The O'Prez

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

X-Ray Cat Trio "I Lied"

(Killjoy Records 2017)

I Lied
Ram Riders
Lonely On A Saturday Night
The Devil's Come Rag

This is the third slab of wax from the Leeds-based outfit X-Ray Cat Trio. I'll get the particulars out of the way first shall I? Okay, This is available on black vinyl (400 copies), hot pink vinyl (50 copies - band edition) and lizard yellow vinyl (50 copies - Killjoy Records edition).  Now then, the music. Well, in a nutshell, this 7 incher is a funsize Rockabilly Psychosis And The Garage Disease. Packed with quality and diversity. This is a must-have for anyone with even a modicum of good taste. By my calculations, it's a 10 minute joyride through everything I love about my chosen music genres. From trashy, sleazy garage rock'n'roll to surf, right into a bit of 1950s bubblegum pop balladeering (with bollocks) and a rockabilly chaser for the road. The boys show expert prowess on every one. Usually at the end of these I stick on a sample track of what to expect, but in this case, sticking on a single track wouldn't do the boys justice so I'm sticking on a sample of all 4 songs sexily merged together by me because I'm nice like that. The lads are no museum piece though. Yes they play an eclectic mix of styles rooted in the 1950s and 60s but do so with such vigour and dynamism that they wouldn't have been "radio-friendly" back then. With that said, they're not radio-friendly now either and that's why I love em. Having the ability to appeal to a multitude of subcultures is a rare trait in a band but from where I'm sitting this a trait the X-Ray Cat Trio have in abundance.  
The O'Prez

Monday, May 22, 2017

Radarmen "Radarmen"

(Killjoy Records 2017)

Invasion Of The Radarmen
Cosmic Kidnapping
End Of Line

Well this one took me by complete surprise as I wasn't familiar with the band at all. So with no expectations to be met whatsoever, I stuck it on the turntable and had immediate erect nipples. This is straight-up 100% psychobilly with no harmful additives. Clean guitar, pounding drums and slap bass aplenty. The opening ditty is like a more evil sounding Guana Batz. Me likey. What follows is more of the same minus the Batz influence but still heavy on the classic psychobilly sound....of the mid 80s European variety. Me likey again. This EP is one wrecking pit-friendly slab of excellence. Lyrically it steers away from the usual horror fare and the boys opt for a more nihilistic sci-fi  approach. Well they are called the Radarmen so the clue was right there. Fuck me there's even some old school psychobilly screams to be had. I love screams me. The lads hail from California and this is their début release. It was available on purple and white vinyl but those are already sold out but the sexy black ones can still be purchased from Killjoy...limited stocks though so get yer finger out of yer arse. As début releases go, this is right up there with the best...and better than a lot more. Radarmen are definitely a band to look out for and are injecting a much needed shot in the arse to the somewhat stagnant US psycho scene as far as new talent goes. This record is filled with melodious aggression and I love it.
The O'Prez

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Bob Wayne "Bad Hombre"

(People Like You Records 2017)

Hell Yeah
Mr. Bandana
Still Truckin'
420 Bound
Hangin' Tree
Take Back The USA
The Last Breath You Take
Fairground In The Sky
Devil's Backbone
Kiss My Ass God Bless The USA
80 Miles From Baghdad
Working Class Musician
Wake Me Up

Outlaw Country eh? Just what is it?  There are many exponents of this Country music offshoot doing the rounds. But is it a Country music offshoot? I don't think so. It's just that real Country has become so watered down and sugar coated that it's barely recognisable. So maybe the Outlaw tag by these artists is a two-fingered salute to what is passing off as Country these days and guys like Bob Wayne are actually the ones playing the real deal. Anyway, musings aside, on with the music. Two instruments I love to hear are pedal steel and fiddle. Especially on slower songs. I'm a glutton for the melancholic. There's pedal steel and fiddle aplenty to be heard on this album. And...seeing as this is a psychobilly/rockabilly site, I'm pleased to announce there's a nice slapping bass in the fray too! This is Bob's 8th album but the first I've heard. Sorry Bob. Lyrically he's telling stories of his own life experiences which anyone can relate to...that is, those of us that weren't born with a silver spoon in our mouths and have enough life experience under our belts to be able to appreciate the story telling. This is music for the ordinary man (or woman...no sexism here...isn't that right bitches?). I can hear that Waylon Jennings style Country in abundance (especially in the story telling department) but it also veers into that Bakersville/Buck Owens sound here and there. In a nutshell, what this album is is 100% sugar free, down to earth, honest to fuck Country music played with the kind of heart and veracity that "modern" country has all but forgotten. The album is out now on CD and vinyl and you can pick it up directly from the good folks over at People Like You Records (links below).
The O'Prez

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Brook Blanche "Brook Blanche"

(Broken Neck Records 2017)

Fools On The Barstools
Your Side
Empty Promises
Two Wrongs
Sink & Burn
Head Of The Table
Prettiest Girl
With Me

There's a lot of dross to be heard in modern cuntry music. The honesty is gone out of it. The simplicity. Conversely there are still artists like Brook Blanche who haven't jumped on the train-o-shite to Shittington and play a mournful, honest and simple version of all things Americana just like it was meant to be played. This is stripped down stuff. It's as if him and his mates have all turned up in your sitting room to serenade you with tales of heartbreak in all its guises. Warning: If you are going through some form of heartbreak this will have you reaching for the kleenex and, if you're a girl...add a big tub of ice cream to the tissue quota....and an understanding female (or gay) friend for comforting purposes. Brook Blanche really knows how to compose a song that tugs on the heartstrings. This is in no small part due to that aforementioned honesty. We've all been there. That feeling of loss and regret. He just has an impeccable talent for articulating those feelings and putting them to song. It's a universal thing and Blanche poetically puts into words what most of us haven't the ability to but wish we had. A modern-day troubadour for the heartbroken.
The O'Prez

Brook Blanche on Facebook
Buy the Album
Hellacious Harmonies on Facebook

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

The Long Tall Texans "Headless"

(The Western Star Recording Company 2017)

Countdown To A Breakdown
In My Dreams
Who Told You
Even The Cops Cried (The Day Elvis Died)

Nothing screams Long Tall Texans more than the art of Geo Parkin. He's been synonymous with the Texans imagery for years. My nipples screamed with glee when I saw he did the art for their sexy new 10 inches of blue pleasure. Was this a sign that the music would be every bit as good as the art? To be honest, I've missed Mark Denman's penmanship since his departure. He's written some of the band's best material. But fuck me, that Garry Castleman knows exactly how to pen a whole host of new Texans classics. His song writing style fits the band's sound to a tee. He was the one-time guitarist with the Texans but thankfully still writes for the band. Of course I've missed Denman's guitar style too but 'Brother' Matt Windler...well, sorry Mr. Denman, he's picked (no pun intended) up where you left off and now he has that trademark Texans sound. Fuck me I'm fickle. Now then, in keeping with the informative shenanigans before I press on and talk about the actual music, four of the ditties on here are penned by the aforementioned Mr. Castleman and there are two covers but they both have direct links to our Texans. Countdown To A Breakdown is a cover of a Viki Vortex and the Cumshots song for whom Theo plays the drums, and In My Dreams is a song from the 1996 Home album by The Hotknives of which Mark Carew has been a long-time member. 
Now then, great songs can all go to shit with piss poor production. Enter one Mr. Alan Wilson. This just keeps getting better and better doesn't it? The three Texans (via Brighton) as a unit, Parkin's art, Wilson twiddling his multiple knobs. This is Long Tall Texans gold. All the ingredients are there. There were one or two speed bumps along the road of 2017 releases that I was really looking forward to but this is not one of them. The boys have always had a distinctive sound and Headless has it in spades. Instantly recognisable as The Long Tall Texans but at the same time sounding as fresh and original as they did when they first saw the light of the day on turntables back in the 1980s. A standout release from a standout band with a clean punchy production from Alan Wilson. Countless bands have come and gone since the Texans first release and thirty odd years later they're still putting a lot of their cohorts to shame. The 10 incher is out now on Mr. Wilson's Western Star label but is sold out on his webstore. It's limited to 500 copies but there are still some knocking about from the usual outlets so get it while the going is good. 
In the meantime, I've ordered a rubber stamp from eBay and am whacking this on the cover upon its arrival...
The O'Prez