The first full week of November sees German rockers The BossHoss stomping with their inimitable presence and sound as support to Motorhead in a UK tour. To accompany the three date rampage and to commemorate ten years raising rock ‘n’ roll revelry, the Berlin septet has released a UK only compilation album. Cowboys From Hell is a sixteen track rabble-rouser consisting of The BossHoss classics and live staples, a selection of tracks unleashing the full uniqueness, depth, and diversity of the band’s country rock/rock ‘n’ roll voracity.
Listening to the album you are soon stirred up by the thick weave of flavours which make up the band’s propositions. Infused in the styles just mentioned, there are just as rich and healthy blazes of punk, funk, metal, and rock pop involved, and that is still only scratching the first few layers of their contagious enterprise. The band creates rock ‘n’ roll to have fun with, sounds to lose inhibitions to, and insatiable devilry to wreak mischievous havoc to. Like a mix of Volbeat, Gene Vincent, Johnny Cash, and ZZ Top in league with The Damned, Helldorado, James Brown and Faith No More, The BossHoss is an instant provocateur and best friend with songs as evidenced on Cowboys From Hell, which are somehow instantly familiar yet a brand new incitement for ears and body to romp with.
Opening with the bluesy twang and hard rock feistiness of Bullpower, the album swiftly has feet and imagination, not forgetting ears wrapped up in its impending revelling. The multiple and varied vocals of the track, as proven across the album, is a potent lure to match the sounds around them, whilst its straight forward and highly persuasive blaze of old school and modern rock ‘n’ roll united, is one infectious and muscular stomp.
It is a powerful start which never dips below full satisfaction across the release; the following Volbeat seeded contagion of new single Whatever an immediate and richer temptation for ears and passions. Brass flames heat up the busy sonic underbelly of the song whilst heavy rhythmic baiting grips ears with predatory intent. Ultimately though, the song is a party in the ears, its electro swagger and striding urgency an addictive canvassing of thoughts and passions.
Through the hypnotic and lively anthemic prowling of Liberty Of Action, with its sizzling guitars scythes and metronomic beats, and the country spiced rap breeding of the album’s title track, God Loves Cowboys continues to recruit greater submission of body and emotions, the second of the pair an irresistible calling which shares plenty with bands like Hollywood Undead. It is fair to say that The BossHoss is still a relative secret across the UK but already four tracks in they make a potent doorway into their rigorously eventful presence and sound for newcomers and vague acquaintances.
A western twang coaxes in the start of Do It next, but is only the initial spice and lead into the funk fuelled diablerie of the song, keys and brass especially saucy in the sultry Electric Six like seduction before the psychobilly teased Stallion Battalion charges into ears and imagination. Hooks and grooves play with a Queens Of The Stone Age colouring whilst the weighty striding of the track is part Turbonegro and part Tiger Army, and all The BossHoss. Both keep the blood racing through veins and feet locked in an inescapable carousing, the pair straight away backed up in might and infection by the R&B/fifties flavoured rocking that is Shake & Shout. As most tracks it feels as if it is already an old friend on the first play but it does not diminish any of its enticement and unpredictable hues.
As you would expect there are particular pinnacles in any collection of songs and one comes in the mighty presence of Backdoor Man. Smouldering in tone and temptation from the first breath, the song with brass sighs and low key vocals swiftly enthralling, is an instant trap from where rockabilly and heavy rock tenacity with jazzy mischief seals the deal. A heavy and fleet footed shuffle, the track is pure rock alchemy, every twist a primal temptress clad in salacious shadow and aural deviltry. Normally any following song would struggle to live up to such triumph but both the punchy funk loaded Don’t Gimme That and the energetically simmering My Personal Song make an irresistible continuation of great times and lingering seduction. There is no way anyone can avoid swinging their body and voice to the contagion of the first of the two whilst its successor is simply what would emerge if Johnny Cash did funk pop, again the blend of different voices as thrilling as the adventurous yet unfussy sounds themselves.
It is fair to say that certainly in recent times no album involves the listener’s body and voice as mercilessly and relentlessly as Cowboys From Hell, the jumpy enterprise and energy of Keep On Dancing being no different especially as the band craft another chorus which is as incendiary on the listener as it is explosive on the air. There is a spellbinding ingenuity in how the band sculpts such virulent eruptions to enslave their recipients yet never goes for the easy route into and out of what is pure creative toxicity.
Through the hard rock powered My Way with its country rascality and the punkabilly Last Day (Do Or Die) things only continue to inflame the passions whilst Break Free with its mellower fifties pop and melodic rock crooning wrapped in soothing harmonies, incites the imagination again whilst revealing yet another texture in the band’s invention. Each track leaves a licking of appetite’s lips and emotion’s lust before the release closes up with a couple of exhilarating cover songs. First the band takes on Motorhead’s Killers, a twisting of rockabilly/blues rock drama into pure infectiousness and mouth-watering temptation, before they rip up the Cameo classic Word Up, and give it the best make-over heard anywhere. It is rockabilly funk with the blood of cowpunk running through its veins, an addiction which would be topping lists in illegality if a drug.
God Loves Cowboys is The BossHoss’ first official UK album I believe and about time after ten years of tearing up Europe and the world. If the band is new to you then the album is a must, you will never hear a more delicious and devilish slab of epidemic rock ‘n’ roll anywhere.
God Loves Cowboys is available now @ http://www.recordstore.co.uk/recordstore/recordstore/God-Loves-Cowboys/3IJC0000000
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