[sic] Magazine

The Experimental Tropic Blues Band – Liquid Love

Awful hangovers are memorable beasts and it’s a fair bet that most people therefore have a rough list – excuse the pun – of their worst ones. Why this tangential intro? Well, for the most part, Liquid Love sounds exactly like the sort of raucous soundtrack to generate a new entry on this kind of list. Its tales of excess delivered with lashings of afterhours attitude seem to culminate on the louche, part-French language “Sex Games”, a hollerin’ hoedown to necessitate a next-day trudge to the GUM clinic if ever there was one. Not that any of this is a surprise, The Experimental Tropic Blues Band have rock ‘n’ roll precedent in this field.

Originally seeing the light of day in 2011, the re-released Liquid Love LP, which takes its name from the suspect singles’ club of the artwork, is their Liège band’s third outing of bluesy rock and this time they’ve snagged a genre titan as producer. Analogue-fiend Jon Spencer thus brings his patented blues explosion to the album and his brand of messy, full-frontal 60s rock is evident in the filthy-nasty “Keep This Love” and “The Best Burger”. Keeping things dumb-but-fun, the fast and fuzzy garage-blues of “Break Up” is also worthy of note, as is the persistent Cramps fixation, which bubbles along in sequence with choppy lines of frayed blues-rock on a number of tracks, coming to a head on the decidedly tongue-in-cheek, but enjoyable rock ‘n’ roll romp “Can’t Change” – a bewildering exercise akin to having Lux Interior covering the Shangri Las .

There are significant limitations to Liquid Love however. The European blues-funk of “Worm Wolf” is particularly offensive, with lead singer Boogie Snake ‘s cringe-worthy falsetto a particular low. No-one’s doubting his range though, for elsewhere he turns in a ridiculously gravelly turn for “Holy Piece Of Wood” while his band mates Dirty Coq and Devil d’Inferno (I kid you not) pepper the same unfortunate track with wholly inadvisable funk-scratching. The ugly closer “Fantasy World” is about as welcome as a full frat-party’s worth of sex pests too.

When the nausea has finally abated, you’ve got to weigh up the cost of a hangover, determining at a simple level whether it was worth it or not. Getting lucky at Liquid Love is likely an experience you’ll regret for some time.

Advised downloads: “The Best Burger” and “Break Up”.

~Liquid Love is re-released on the 25th March 2013 on Jaune Orange .~