In a world of by-the-book rock ‘n’ roll traditionalists, leather-jacketed sleazeballs with bad quiffs, and guitar bands that sound like a soulless version of their influences, Warmduscher are maybe the only rock band that it's worth clutching onto.
A wild-eyed supergroup formed of Fat White Family, Paranoid London and Childhood, they seem to effortlessly turn the romantic sprawling highways of America – home of frontman Clams Baker – into wacky, impassioned, guttural, garage rock stompers. On new album 'Whale City', this sound reaches its zenith, as over 11 tracks Clams and the gang paint a vulgar picture of a town full of all the strange characters you can possibly imagine.
Lead single 'Big Wilma' acts as the perfect sonic manifesto; hard-riffing garage rock blares, as Clams’ words fly out of his mouth, like bullets from a gun. A militarised Beefheart, Warmduscher are a force. On 'Sweet Smell Of Florida', they thrash through a Butthole Surfers-esque sleez jam, that cackles and growls like a saltwater croc.
But oh, it’s ever so reductive to say that Warmduscher are simply a brutish bunch of guitar-wielding hoodlums. 1,000 Whispers wafts through the speakers like a cold breeze after a sweaty afternoon, Clams’ croon a sexy growl atop ba-ba-ba-ing vocal harmonies, whilst closer 'Summertime Tears' fits into the same sonic continuum – like The Flaming Lips without the blurred, soft edges. It gives you chance to breathe after a frankly whirlwind tour of ‘Whale City’.
Warmduscher offer an ultimately imaginative, fun and thrilling take on rock ‘n’ roll, in an era where music of this ilk can feel so suffocating. Never boring, never dull, this is a glowing, fire-breathin’, thunder-clappin’ ghost train of a record. Everything these people do seems to turn to gold, and you can just tell from the album’s typography alone that this is no exception.
Words: Cal Cashin
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