[sic] Magazine

Richard Rose – Radiation Breeze

Radiation Breeze is the wonderfully trashy debut from LA-based five-piece Richard Rose, not one rad dude as you might expect, but a full team effort from certain (sometimes) members of Ex-Cult, GØGGS, OBN III’s and others, titular frontman Laurence Richard and guitarist Thomas Rose especially conspicuous in this all-star line-up. Radiation Breeze naturally draws from its members’ rich schooling in garage and punk, but as the sleazy Richard Rose they may have found their most memorable persona, the rag-tag rhythm section filled out by bassist Bag Mantrellis, drummer Jerry Leymar and saxophonist Gravy McKay.

And it’s McKay that often leaves his mark loudest via mainlining art-punk squeal, his experimental additions rampaging through the running order as if the instrument has been somehow weaponised. It’s in good company too, killer guitars, dirty bass and beefy drums having sheer excess stamped through to their bones. Distorted riffs hit the sweet spot time and time again. These rippers come at you supercharged and super-fast, a fist-fight of breathless barbs stalked over confidently by Richard’s evil venom.

The soundtrack to some tough dive bar off Sunset Strip, the hard-rocking strut of the classic-sounding opener “Red Telephone” introduces LA glitz to primitive shred and snotty punk, while the peeling guitar fuzz of “On The Bridge” lands like 70s AOR sped up to 45rpm, sweet soloing bursting out of the speakers to the accompaniment of one of those controlled yet laddish nasal barks so much imitated by today’s bunch of neo post-punks. A huge change of tact then comes from the 15-minute, two-part title track, simmering late-night spacing leading to splashy, stadium-sized cymbals and smoky lighting rigs, furious fret fingering and feedback bringing the album back to the boil, honky tonk posturing reprised on “pt. 2” before getting launched into warp drive by aggressive kosmiche.

Like shooters, cigarettes and an ill-advised hook-up, Radiation Breeze is obviously, gloriously bad for your health, but you’re gonna do it anyway, swear you never will again, and then find yourself creeping back for more almost every weekend.

Best track: “Red Telephone”

~Radiation Breeze is released 4th December 2020 via In The Red.~

In The Red Records · Richard Rose – Red Telephone