We met this lively crew at Ramblin’ Man Fair and though they are evidently musically skilled they seem to share an ignited passion for making and performing their own music. They have their heritage band influences but have already developed a linear sound which gives them character. A few weeks later up in Camden we attended their album launch and exciting fare it was. The group have no problem firing up a crowd but have more to offer than air-punching anthems. Lead vocalist and harpist Louis James fronts Aaron Plows on bass, drummer Steve Corrigan and guitar man Jack Fawdry. It’s their attack that first grabs you and thereafter the quality of the songs…
The set kicks off with I’ll Be With You, bass-led and uncannily similar in style to ace US rockers Cactus and their stagger-fuelled songs. This is insanely catchy, radio-friendly and a splash of Bad Company in the vocal delivery.no bad thing. Next up is
Go Slow grinding into earshot, slivers of bent notes on a rhythm section cauldron and with an airy soul-inflected vocal.
Law Man races off with a string of sharp guitar figures, panned across the channels and flexible drums as the bass bubbles under the whole. Maybe one of the best bits of singing on the collection. Hanging Around isn’t the Stranglers tune, but a blues-rock stomper that is again addictive by third or fourth play. Lovely pastoral bridge, too.This ain’t muttonhead rock but sophisticates revelling in the beauty of distortion.
Lonely Soul is a welcome reflective moment at its commencement and another voice is used by Louis to put this one over. A song I have really taken to. The arrangement builds but stays soulful, no descent into overkill. If you learn from the best like Free, these musical moments can be within your reach!
No Resolve is a fuzzbox tour-de-force, with a dynamic arrangement and plenty of room over the lope for James to sing the back off the song. A highlight and a good example of their own sound, I venture. Fabulous guitar solo that avoids clichés. Next is an Interlude that sounds ominous and Eastern-tinged. The Brave is very British rock-blues and confident as anything. The bass and drums sound powerful and nimble, here. Rabbit Hole I do recall from the live show as a belter of a tune, full of space and spiky axe chording, with a nice ghostly tone used as a thread between the words, Octaver most likely.
Drunk Words starts gently with eerie guitar tones before settling into a stealthy rock number, another good performance selection. Matters close with Get Loose an uptempo jaunt with handclaps and a tinge of the early Who.
Get along and see these chaps play when you can, you’ll thank us!
(Thanks to Gary Levermore)
Dirty Thrills debut album ‘Heavy Living’ is out now on Frontiers Records.
For more information visit the band’s official website here: http://bit.ly/2jqpgz8
In addition, the band have announced headline UK tour dates alongside the previously announced shows with Gun and InMe. All of the dates are listed below:
Saturday 2nd December 2017 – Barrowlands, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom (with Gun)
Friday 8th December 2017 – Manchester Academy, Manchester, United Kingdom (with Gun & InMe)
Saturday 9th December 2017 – Electric Ballroom, Camden, London, United Kingdom (with Gun & InMe)
Wednesday 13th December 2017 – Waterfront Studio, Norwich, United Kingdom (Headline Show)
Friday 15th December 2017 – FAC251, Manchester, United Kingdom (Headline Show)
Wednesday 28th February 2018 – Underworld, Camden, London, United Kingdom (Headline Show)