[sic] Magazine

First Glances – The Madcaps

By all rights, The Madcaps ought to be a ska-punk band. That name just screams fast tempos and braying brass, but these jaunty Frenchman use their keys and horns to channel a groovier brand of melodic garage instead. And, in fairness, they’ve bundled it all up with the analogue charm of someone like Black Lips, but – equally fairly – are yet to consistently write the same quality of song.

The nuclear four-piece hail from Rennes and their lively new LP, Hot Sauce, nevertheless expands on their soon-to-be-reissued debut (via the collaborative efforts of kindred spirits Gnar Tapes and Burger Records, no less), interspersing the LP’s twelve, 60s-indebted rockers with poppy, sometimes wistful ballads and vintage R&B licks. Harder-hitting fuzz guitar is never far away, however, and it, along with various levels of hot riffs and soloing, often seems to duet with Thomas Dahyot’s English-language vocal.

Hot on Dahyot’s springed heels, and no matter how dusty, the band’s accompanying vocal harmonies often soften the brasher and more bulldozing end of Hot Sauce; though there’s little in this vein to temper the snotty silliness of a track like “Taco Truck”. Still, we’ve all had similar cravings at times. We know the quality to be inconsistent. We know there are healthier options. But sometimes, specifically after the moon’s come up, only a band like The Madcaps will do.

~Hot Sauce is released January 15th 2015 via Howlin Banana Records.~