New York rock ‘n’ rollers The Shrieks are led by Italian/Venezuelan shrieker Luis Accorsi. After treading the beer & sweat drenched boards of CBGB’S fronting he likes of Manslaughter and Cracked Latin, Luis teamed up with producer Raphael Sepulveda to channel big guitars and even bigger choruses in The Flux Machine. Their masterful ‘Louder’ album came out in 2016 and is well worth checking out if you dig arena rock from the likes of Velvet Revolver and My Chemical Romance.
Fast forward a few years and The Flux Machine have evolved into The Shrieks, and following last year’s ‘Toxygen’ album, Accorsi returns with a new bunch of cool cats and some even cooler tunes to digest.
Opener ‘ T.Rex’ carries a ramshackle sound straight from the heart of Johnny Thunders. From the retro guitar riff that sounds like a car horn, to the junkie-like vocal drawl, it exudes the sounds of the streets (or should I say the gutters) of 70’s New York City.
Yeah, you could say The Shrieks shake it loose with the best of ‘em! It’s Lo-fi garage rock to the max on the likes of ‘Love Or Lust’ and the ultra cool and funky ‘Give Love’, where Luis channels Iggy to a soundtrack of soulful backing vocals and Hammond organ runs. Yeah, this is quality stuff.
The edgy title track is ‘Ballad Of Dwight Fry’s funky, punky older brother. A full on Alice meets Iggy run through that lyrically deals with mental health issues. A posthumous tribute to his friend Joe, who worked as a caregiver in a hospital. The singer takes on the roll of doctor, reeling off a list of drug dosing instructions for some hapless patient, over Strokes-like guitar stabs before breaking into a wah-wah infused jam out. Its dark, its quirky and its damn fine too.
‘Notre Dame Is Burning’ takes things down with acoustic countrified vibes and spoken word, poetic vocalisin’. Just lay back and chillax, as the singer takes us on a heady, tripped-out ride to question life, death and everything. As it builds, the vocal harmonies transport us into Pink Floyd territories. Spoken word seems to be a bit of a thang for our man Luis, as it pops up at various places to great effect.
The Shrieks mix it up nicely veering between retro, garage rock, bluesy jams and laid back, countrified sentiment. At all times sounding like the soundtrack to a Starsky & Hutch episode.
The funky ‘Collision’ with its scratchy, wah-wah guitars and pumping NY groove, is a cool tune for sure. Elsewhere, the mournful guitars and tinkling of the ivories add depth to the almost jammed out, countrified ballad that is ‘Let Me Go’. Country style slide guitar and soul sister backing vocals take the more upbeat rock ‘n’ roller ‘Lie To Me’ further into Rolling Stones territory.
Closer ‘Legs’ is a classic rock blues jam of the highest order. Coming on like a young Steven Tyler shrieking over a bad ass Sabbath riff, Luis delivers his most schizophrenic vocal performance as he descends, seemingly into madness for the duration of the song.
The Shrieks deliver a solid rock ‘n’ roll record that harks back to a different time. Eclectic and diverse in its own way ‘Ode To Joe’ soaks up 70’s rock nostalgia to great effect. A heady melting pot of what made The New York Dolls, Lou Reed, The Stones and Iggy so damn exciting, and why they still remain a great influence on great rock ‘n’ roll bands today.
Author: Ben Hughes