Monday, 29 September 2008

The Beasts of Bourbon - The Low Road

Despite being together (on and off) since the 1980s, I only came across the Beasts of Bourbon recently when they were referred to on Glitzinet, where 'McBoy' describes them - and The Low Road - thus:

"No rock n' roll album is more caustic and dangerous as this one (Appetite For Destruction was last seen whimpering back home with its tail between it's legs after being put next to this). Like Nick Cave given the growl and macho bravado of Bon Scott sound tracked to a depraved sleazy swampy Gun Clubbed Rolling Stones. Kills those 4 birds (Nick Cave, AC/DC, Gun Club, Rolling Stones) with one stone making them obsolete and un needed for my island nightmare."

I couldn't help but feel that I'd been missing out all these years, and tracked down The Low Road immediately.

The Low Road opens with 'Chasing The Dragon'; now, an old band of mine had a song called that, but whereas we plundered Metallica's 'Master of Puppets' for lyrics, you get the distinct impression that the Beasts of Bourbon are writing from actual experience. The rest of the album backs up everything McBoy says, and it's even noteworthy that of all the Rolling Stones songs to cover they pick the one that was banned and never officially released (the infamous 'Cocksucker Blues', delivered to Decca as the band's final single of their then soon-to-expire contract before they jumped ship to set up their own label).

As dirty a band you are likely to hear, the Beasts of Bourbon don't strike me as the kind of guys you'd take home to meet your parents. I feel in need of a wash from simply writing about them ...


Michael said...

I love these guys. I was thrilled to see them at SXSW last year. It was the first time in many, many years I actually felt a sense of danger in a rock & roll band. I was in front of the stage at first, but after one song I made sure there was at least one person between me and Tex Perkins at all times. He had that scary glint in his eye. And they rocked like fuck.

Pretty much anything Tex is involved in is worth hearing - he's one of rock's great vocalists and he's even more effective in softer contexts (lke the duo record he did with You Am I's Tim Rogers as TnT, of the Tex, Don & Charlie records). Guitarist Spencer P. Jones puts out great solo records as well.

DGW said...

I do need to look into the rest of their output - both as a band and other projects they seem like a prolific bunch so thanks for the tips.

Michael said...

The Beasts' latest (and, apparently, final, though that's been said before) album Little Animals is a great album and is probably easier to find than their older stuff. Jones' solo album Fait Accompli is as good as any Beasts record as well.