Top of the list of “bands I should have seen live before I moved”, Pussycat And The Dirty Johnsons are back with album number four, ‘Beast’. Check out any live footage of the band, and you’ll see what I mean. Puss was born for the stage, and with the perfectly fuzzed riffs of Dirty Jake and tribal drums of Filfy Antz, they are a three-piece who command your attention.
Don’t panic, but some songs are over three minutes long, and one breaks the four-minute barrier. Almost prog length by their standards, but the music remains as feral as ever. As ‘Lying In My Bed’ batters your speakers with the fear of “existential dread”, yet you can still shake your bones to it.
There is much, righteous anger and venom across the twelve songs, which shouldn’t surprise anyone familiar with their work. Keeping an essentially live sound works well, ‘Doin It’ is perfect for a sweaty club, encouraging you to follow your dreams, regardless of the doubters. Zero tolerance of idiots and hidden agendas runs through ‘Not Your Baby’, ‘Knee Jerk’ and ‘Shit’, while ‘Stale’ despairs at the small town attitudes of “Basingstoke psychosis” (in itself a good title). ‘Abuser’ is plain talking, while the four plus minutes is devoted to ‘Do Ya Feel Me?’, their unique take on a love song, when you wait to see each other again.
‘Hey Honey’ builds from an almost hushed intro, a list of the inevitable judgements of others for carving out your own path. Puss and co. chose their own way long ago. It’s the only way to be happy, and they’re on fine form here.
I just visited your website and there are Kiss levels of merch on there. When can we see the cutthroat bobbleheads? and what merch would you love to see for the Cutthroat Brothers?
Jason: bobbleheads would be fantastic! Just looking for somebody that will make a two-headed monster version. We’ve talked about Cutthroat Brothers barber products, you know, pomades, shampoo…maybe it should all be blood-red liquid but not stick to the skin. Or maybe it should?
Donny: potato chips, you just can’t eat one.
Some footage from the European tour is on youtube it looks insane, how good was the tour?
Donny: The most fun on tour ever, one night I tried to hug everyone in the place.
Jason: The tour was fantastic! Really great crowds and venues. The welcome for our first time was overwhelming. People screaming and dancing and not letting us stop playing until we played every song we knew. Tours really are about connecting with people on a personal level and that happened a lot. I’d never been to any of the places we went so everything was really fresh and exciting. We were supposed to be on tour right now. Life is cancelled due to Covid, so we wait patiently to return to work and the road.
COVID-19 has derailed everyone are there plans for a return to Europe? What about UK shows?
Jason: Absolutely, We will be coming back as soon as the dust settles. We can’t wait to play the UK! Punk is still alive more across the pond, so wherever people want us that’s where we will be.
The live album sounds amazing will it see a vinyl release?
Donny: I’m hoping Houndgawd will do the vinyl once life is somewhat back to normal.
Jason: Definitely we will get it out on vinyl. We will hopefully everything on vinyl as soon as the pressing plants start up again. A run of white vinyl for ‘Live in Europe’ would be fun.
How do you approach songwriting as a pair or alone?
Jason: Generally I will sketch out the song to a point then we will arrange it and finish them when we see each other. The demos sound a lot different than the final version because i just sketch them on my iphone. We are hoping to release a collection of demos sometime soon for our hardcore fans. I always enjoy listening to ones from my favorite artists.
Donny: There’s a major component to our writing that I think, makes this work, no negativity, we are friends, we do this to have fun.
What were the decisions you had about doing this whole thing as a pair and not heading for a more traditional band set up with bass or piano or two guitars? Is it something you might look into in the future?
Donny: funny you should ask, we have a collaboration awaiting the record presses with the legend Mike Watt. He had offered to play on our next record (‘Taste for Evil’) in our very first interview for our Debut album on his radio show. We took him up on it and sent him the tracks, somehow emails were in the spam folder and we missed having him on the record or so we thought. That said after ‘Taste for Evil’ was set to come out we found the Watt tracks, we have 4 collaborations from ‘Taste for Evil’ that we’ll release as soon as Houndgawd is back up and running full speed.
Jason: It was an accident. We didn’t intend it to be just two people, but it felt right and we didn’t see the need for more. We make creative decisions really quickly this way and with Jack Endino to steer us we can get a lot done fast. We don’t want to risk the squeaky wheel too. You know, the other person who is always arguing or being late, wearing shorts to gigs, you know THAT one.
Have you recorded using a full set up or are you open to ideas?
Jason: We are open to whatever for sure! It just hasn’t happened yet and probably won’t soon as long as it feels good to us.
Tell us a bit about your background in music?
Donny: Mudhoney, ELO, EODM, AC/DC, ZZ Top. My grandma was a classical pianist and the she taught piano and organ played at funerals and weddings. My dad was a keyboardist as well he had a band pretty much my whole life and then went into playing for church. My parents said I started playing at 2, I don’t remember but I also don’t remember not playing.
Jason: My father is a preacher, so I started playing in our family country western gospel band touring around doing Carter Family songs and such around age 13 I think. Early country and rockabilly were my first loves, then my folks bought me a Louie Louie compilation that started with Kingsmen and ended with Black Flag. My parents accidentally introduced me to punk rock and it was downhill from there.
what plays on the stereo in the barbershop? maybe a short back and sides or sponsored ‘something for the weekend’ could be on the merch desk at future shows?
Donny: Punk, Metal, Garage, Rockabilly, rap, hip hop.
You teamed up with German label Hound Gawd Records (which you mentioned) they’ve released some great records how did that pairing come about?
Jason: Oliver from Hound Gawd! Got a copy of ‘Taste for Evil’ when we just finished it. It was mentioned to him by our shared publicist, Ilka. He dug it and the rest is history. We love Hound Gawd! All the bands are great.
Donny: I can’t say enough about if you’re putting out your art do it with someone who loves what you do or even more than you, this is why we are with Houndgawd.
What plans have you got in the future? Recording? touring? I heard you were ready to record album three in March. Did that happen? is Jack Endino involved again? What can we expect on the next record? Is Mike Watt playing on it at all? If you could get a bunch of guest musicians to join on the next record who would you love to ask?
Jason: Jack is definitely involved with everything we do. He really is the third Cutthroat Brother. Mr. Watt has offered to play on stuff again, yes, but we don’t know any specifics. We have another album planned out. We had to push it to a safer time because of Covid but we will be at it ASAP. I’ve asked Jesse Hughes from Eagles of Death Metal, he said he would be on it but we will see. I would love to get him and Jennie Vee on the next one. Cross your fingers.
This video was shot at the legendary Berlin punk club, ‘Wild at Heart’ on the first night of the tour. Burlesque troupe The Velvet Creepers joined the band on stage that night. The track is taken from their second album ‘Taste For Evil’ released on Hound Gawd! Records and was reviewed Here During the global lockdown the band released an excellent live album recorded on their recent European Tour check out the review and link to buy it Here
Hound Gawd! Records will re-release Nikki Hill’s third album entitled “Feline Roots” on April 24, 2020 across Europe on vinyl and CD. We first brought Nikki Hill to you when Gerald Reviewed ‘Feline Roots‘
Hill lets her soul rip on this new collection of songs, displaying her now well-known stance to champion for the pioneers of roots and rock n’ roll, while remaining in perpetual forward motion, inviting anyone who wants to come along for the journey. Johnny Thunders straddling guitar, Bad Brains’ rock meets reggae, Stonesy groove, Sister Rosetta Tharpe rave up rockin’ gospel power, all receive nods of recognition. Hill is unafraid of her past or experiences and puts it out there for the sake of the song. The songs imagine the southern soul rocker at times waving her flag in surrender, then in the next moment finding her way back into the climb, bending through supercharged blues, punk soul, revival tent gospel, rockabilly shouts, whatever it takes to get there. It’s her version of rock n’ roll that can only come from her stories. Nikki has never been afraid to take the road less traveled, and it’s clear with “Feline Roots” that she’s living every word.
Last year I described the debut Cutthroat Brothers self-titled debut album as “ dirtier than a teenager’s mind” and less than twelve months later, Jason and Donny are back with a taste for all things evil. Are they still that nasty? Hell yeah !!
Twenty six minutes of the Devil’s own music, recorded and mixed over four days in Seattle Washington, with Jack Endino back stroking the knobs….. what’s not to like?
First up, the title track, ‘Taste for Evil’ starts where last year’s debut LP left off. Flat driving drums and stripped down dirty guitar, pure Jesus and Mary Chain . Thankfully ‘Shake, Move, Howl, Kill’ is more of the same, a kind of dirty double scoop of the most evil dessert.
I like ‘Out of Control’ a lot. It’s simple, straightforward and as cool as fuck. Next up ‘Wrong’ is so right with it’s rockabilly undercurrent. Is it a happy song ? Hell no !!
‘Black Candle’ has a pretty mean groove. A zombie dance tune for the apocalypse. And on we go. With ‘Medicine’ and Jason says relapse! Maximum groove, maximum cool. Say ‘perhaps’ to drugs kids.
‘Killing Time’ time is in danger of being up-tempo, while “Candy Cane” steams along like Satan’s own express train. ‘Get Haunted’ has a sweet riff and a groove that’ll earn the pole dancers of the undead tons of tips.
Side two closer “The King is Dead” is a moody beast and deserves to be the go-to tune for any self respecting serial killer’s hobby. You can almost hear the screams !!!
So there you go, a stripped-down review for a beautifully stripped-down album. Ten songs about sex, death, drugs and black magic, all drenched in blood and much like with their debut album….. Think Jesus and Mary Chain, think Cramps, think DEVIL’S MUSIC !!!!!
Hound Gawd! Records have the pleasure of releasing this fine slice of plastic this Halloween on vinyl, CD and in digital form.
The internet will tell you all you need to know about The Cutthroat Brothers. Go there and bully them into playing your town…..
08.11. DE / Berlin / Wild at Heart | 09.11. DE / Cologne / Sonic Ballroom | 10.11. BE / Liége / Prince Bishop Fest | 13.11. DE / Dortmund / Subrosa | 15.11. NL / Groningen / Vera | 16.11. NL / Den Haag / Musicon | 18.11. BE / Wunsdorf / Küsters Hof | 20.11. DE / Frankfurt / Dreikönigskeller | 22.11. NL / Diksmuide / 4AD | 23.11. DE / Hamburg / Monkeys Music Club and more to come..
Pat Todd And The Rank Outsiders don’t make bad records. Might as well get that out there from the start. So, ‘Past Came Calling’ is no exception then and I spose before I’d dropped the needle I knew this but that’s not going to make much sense to anyone as far as a review goes – I knew it was going to be choc-o-bloc with top tunes that followed the time honoured tradition of Rock and Rollers. Dan Baird, Jason and the Scorchers, Dr. Feelgood and Rockpile to namedrop a few fellow participants in the fine art of Rock and Roll. Pat and his Rank outsiders do like to kick up a shitstorm that’s a given but there is more to them than just Rockin’ out.
From the opening drum roll of ‘If Only I Could Fly Backwards In Time’ right through its rollicking verses and chorus to the cool as guitar lick that takes us back to the verse this is a quality opener that shows real intent. Recorded loud to be played loud as all good time Rock and Roll should be at its unkempt best. ‘The Ballad Of Crystal Valladares’ ain’t no Ballad though folks its a bad assed Rocker, built around a rolling guitar lick and some country-tinged melody played, it’s like the soundtrack to a getaway drive by. There’s no flash sound tricks or auto-tune going on here it’s just the sound of a kick-ass band cutting it up in a sweaty studio knowing that with every song they capture a little bit more magic than the last take.
The recording sounds like Mellencamp when he turned up the Les Paul Jr on ‘Whenever We Wanted’. With songs like ‘Run’ which sounds like they’ve been here before such is the comfortable nature of Todd’s songwriting, it’s classic in its arrangement and one of the best songs on the record.
Todd’s cowpunk roots come to the fore on ‘Down In Old Boerne’ with its acoustic guitar and honkin’ mouth organ. ‘The Ring The Bottle And The Gun’ is pure cowpunk as we position the hay bails as we pour the moonshine ready for the yea – haws!
With fourteen songs on offer and never a let up in the quality on offer its a no brainer if you’re considering picking up a copy of this record its impossible to be disappointed you go from the gob iron of ‘Had A Bad Night’ to the smooth laid back rhythm and blues of ‘any Other Way’ straight into the acoustic jam of ‘Idle Time’ whatever style Todd chooses to write in it’s of the highest order Now if The Supersuckers wrote an album this strong – people would be salivating over it.
‘Just Between You and Me’ is the sign off in the style of Ronnie Wood doing Dylan and it just dawned on me I’ve not mentioned How good Todd’s vocals are throughout -Oh I just have. Pick it up – do yourself a favour and whack up the volume you can thank me later. ‘The Past Came Calling’ is very much in the moment but I wouldn’t sit on it just go pick it up.
Coming out of Italy this three-piece peddle a loud incendiary blend of fucked up dark blues with a very healthy amount of Garage rock thrown into the mix. I guess a glance at the artwork isn’t going to tell you much either so the band has the job of letting the music do the talking. ‘Still I Am’ has a rough house Cramps backbeat and outta the Jon Spenser envelope this really gets motoring with appropriate amounts of feedback and howling background noise that motors this opener on. It all gets a little clearer as the songs unfold because The Gentlemens can rock it up and kick up a good old shitstorm between them.
Having not come across the band before I was open-minded as to what to expect but I trust the fact they’re on Hound Gawd! is something of a pair of safe hands to be fair because they don’t do shit records and before the stonking ‘Sheltered’ had properly begun I just knew I was going to enjoy digging into this record. A lot of passion and enough power sees the band really motoring and they just ease through the gears on ‘Shamelove’ which has some fine guitar slinging.
With a slightly more commercial edge ‘Let You Die’ could and should have wide appeal. The foot stomping doesn’t dissipate as ‘Out Of Here’ really ups the temperature with a fine riff and maybe a little too much cowbell! What? I hear you shriek how is there such a thing as too much cowbell? Man its just an opinion! I love the snake oil salesman ranting on the vocals its a really good tune and as it makes way for the funkier ‘A Second Coming’ which has shades of INXS if I might be so bold if they turned the distortion up a notch or three.
As we get balls deep into side two the rockin’ doesn’t relent and neither should it. I love the blues vibe dished out on ‘She Made Me Hard’ as the band sound like their easing back like a hot rod rockin’ and rolling machine and know they’re onto something here. there is no big lazy ballad here to end the set but they do kick back into one of those smokey Dylan and the band kinda jams on the album closer ‘Sin-Love Prey’ and a mighty fine way to end the record it is too. I entered this album with an open mind and no preconceptions and found my reward was waiting on the pick up of that old six string. ‘Triage’ is a very strong album packed full of really impressive songs and if you’re looking for a band you probably haven’t come across yet then grab this with both hands and you too can rejoice to the Rock n Roll Gods for another slice of rock n roll goodness. Amen Gentlemens Amen!