I have to applaud this label. It’s owner, Reverend Beat-Man, is doing music for the right reasons; because he loves it. Sure, if he makes a buck or 2 on the side then that’s cool too, he deserves it. In a day where the CD is dying (while the vinyl survives), it must be getting tougher and tougher for small independent labels to survive but Beat-Man, well, he is hanging in there. Fighting the good fight. Doing what he does best. And that is why I applaud this man. Each release arrives at my PO Box and is always welcomed with opened arms. Voodoo Rhythm live by their own code of ethics; “Records to ruin any party”. I’m afraid nothing could be further from the truth… if you like noisy garage lo-fi trashy rock n roll, that is. And I do, so this works out just fine for me. Since the last issue of LGL has no reviews in it, I shall start by putting them here. What you will find below is the batch of Voodoo Rhythm releases that I received since issue #14 hit the newstands. If words aren’t good enough, you can always tune into the LGL podcast and you will hear songs played from these very releases cos sometimes, it’s good to hear what I am rambling about. No?

All God's Children Have ShoesANDY DALE PETTY – “All God’s Children Have Shoes” (Voodoo Rhythm)
What a great album title. Seriously. How good is that? Anyway, the music found within by Andy Dale Petty is a bit like, okay, well it’s heaps like Bob Dylan (and even includes a cover of Bob’s “Walking Down The Line”). The story about this dude is that he hops trains and plays his guitar in towns around the place. If there’s any truth to that, it’s a unique way to tour and you never know, such trends may just take off. King Khan thinks this dude is the shit and gives him two thumbs up. Repeated listens got me thinking “That King Khan fellow knows what he’s talkin’ about” cos I got hooked in and enjoyed this album a lot. Good guitar playing in the folk country style. It’s a nice little Sunday afternoon record and being that I am writing this review on a Sunday makes me agree with that statement even more.

My Shit Is PerfectBOB LOG III – “My Shit Is Perfect” (Voodoo Rhythm)
It’s hard not to enjoy the repetitive sounds of once Tucson’s, now Melbourne’s Bob log III. His one man band of tit-clappin’ Southern fried goodness has been rockin’ across the world for many years now, releasing records all over the place, each one from the same formula, all enjoyable. Now after a 4 year hiatus he releases his first album for Voodoo Rhythm and it’s just what you’d expect from a Bob Log III release; Slide guitar country and blues with intangible lyrics sung through a telephone. Exactly. “My Shit Is Perfect” is good times right through from opener to finisher. If you know his stuff, you know what you’re getting, if you don’t, see what all the fuss is about. There’s a reason Tom Waits worships his every move and it sure ain’t financial. Dig it!

The Sheik Said ShakeHIPBONE SLIM & THE KNEE TREMBLERS – “The Sheik Said Shake” (Voodoo Rhythm)
Kicking off with a track titled “We All Got Somebody That We Want To Kill”, the latest album from Hipbone and his cohorts is another blast of blues and swagger brought to you by those folks at Voodoo Rhythm. This goofy rockabilly-esque band play music the way I like it. It’s well recorded, the songs are well written and structured just perfectly, and the sound is authentic and sweet. I loved the first Hipbone album and this one is just killing me. Groovy baby! This stuff is just something else. So go on buddy, put a rocket up it and dance the one legged rock cos after all, the sheik said shake, dammit!

Wrestling Rock N RollLIGHTNING BEAT-MAN & HIS NO TALENT – “Wrestling Rock N Roll” (Voodoo Rhythm)
He just keeps churning them out. One after another. Beat Mean Zeller is possibly the most prolific garage rock n roll songwriter of the last 20 years. The man just doesn’t stop. Originally released in 1994 as a 10” record only, Voodoo Rhythm have finally(?) reissued this slab of trash rock inspired by wrestling and hot sweaty sex with highschool girls who don’t know any better. There’s no drum kit, just a masked Beat-Man luchadore armed with only a headlock, his guitar and a Tascam 4 track recorder. Now unleashed on the public, these sleazy sounds of low budget schlock have been repackaged with 3 bonus cuts totaling 19 tracks of fuzztoned insanity. If you know Beat-Man and his incredible history of raw lo-fi trash, you know that this is one wild rummage through the garage of rock n roll. Probably one for the diehards.

Brule LentementMAMA ROSIN – “Tu As Perdu Ton Chemin” / “Brule Lentement” (Voodoo Rhythm)
They call this band a power Cajun trio… from Switzerland. Nice! What an interesting combo. Enough so that this accordion thrashin’ country waltz blues band. Unlike anything I have come across before, Mama Rosin will get people dancin’. These 2 albums are kinda all over the place. They don’t fear trying new styles, adding bizarre instruments and arrangements to their sound. Most bands that overindulge in experimenting end up sounding shit but for these guys, it somehow works, strangely enough. My fave of the two was probably “Brule Lentement” with its upbeat feel throughout. Mama Rosin are probably not for everyone but it’s definitely for me. It’s crazy shit, and I’m a bit left of the dial anyway so this works for me. Although, repeated listens could have its novelty value wear off so I recommend that unless you really dig the Cajun sound, probably best to approach with caution and don’t listen too often.

MelvilleMOVIE STAR JUNKIES – “Melville” (Voodoo Rhythm)
Kinda like the Beasts of Bourbon played lo-fi crossed with The Stooges, but from Italy. That’s what I am hearing, others might hear something else. Their bio says they’re like the Birthday Party and the Gun Club. Two bands I have never owned any records of so for me to make a comparison to that would be silly. Still, this is pretty good. I like the mix of western styles and swamp blues. It’s a dark sounding album but it’s catchy and the playing is pretty on the money. Interesting if nothing else, but I liked it. The lo-fi ear damaging that can be caused if played at high volume levels might have you leaving this off your iPod but you will find times when such an album needs to be played. Most probably at a funeral once everyone’s absolutely sloshed on wine and beers.

Black Vodoun Space BluesPIRATE LOVE – “Black Vodoun Space Blues” (Voodoo Rhythm)
Mixing the punk angst of the Dead Boys, the intensity of early Black Flag, and the psychedelica of 60’s beat, Pirate Love from Norway are a force to be reckoned with. This shit is in your face, it’s completely chaotic and totally over the top. Such an interesting combo of noise and they make it work. It’s pretty hard to describe this band but it’s probably like a 50’s version of Lubricated Goat playing Fuzztones songs? Yeah, something like that but probably not. Either way, it’s brutal garage rock and I like it!

Pearls Before SwineTHE GUILTY HEARTS – “Pearls Before Swine” (Voodoo Rhythm)
This album kicks ass! This, their second offering sounds a thousand times better than their self-titled debut… and I quite liked that! It’s amazing what the addition of a bass guitar will do to one’s sound, especially when his upbringing involved The Fuzztones and the Lords of Altamont. Nice! These LA cats have really dished up the goods with a solid garage rock n roll record that’s worthy of your time. It’s a rompin’ stompin’ mix and the recording has that loose live feel, a sound without processes, pitch correction or noise gates. I love this sound. It sounds like you’re in the studio with them as they jam these cuts to tape. Try not shakin’ to the aptly titled “Shake”. Try not groovin’ to the opener “Devil’s Tail. And you won’t be sittin’ still until the finale, “Suffer So Easy” bumps and grinds to a halt. That’s rock n roll!

Boogie The House Down - Juke Joint StyleTHE JUKE JOINT PIMPS – “Boogie The House Down – Juke Joint Style” (Voodoo Rhythm)
This was recorded in 2007!? You coulda fooled me. It sounds like it was recorded in the 50’s on some shitty 8 track or something. Like, this is vintage lo-fi blues that sounds real. Honest schlock from the heart of the soul, the Juke Joint Pimps, slop around these tunes like a bunch of wet rags. It’s like Creedance crossed with Muddy Waters meets Elmore James or something. Real jivin’ blues shit with harmonicas and slide guitar that sounds like it was recorded in a toilet. Heaps good! I really digged this shit.

I wholeheartedly recommend support for this label. It’s a real label run by a real person who loves real music. There’s no processed packaging here. Just rock n roll. Head on over to their website now for samples and whatnot.

Damo.

Click here for the official website of all things Voodoo Rhythm.
In Australia, all of Voodoo Rhythms releases can be ordered through Off The Hip Records.

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