To convince and prove that physical and emotional rock ‘n’ roll stomping is one of the primal instincts inside us all UK trio The Dukes Of Bordello release their debut album. Lowdown ‘N’ Dirty offers up eleven tracks of balls swinging, voracious rock ‘n’ roll which not so much lives up to its title than stamps it relentlessly into the heart. It is an encounter leaving the body and soul breathless with music which quite simply could and will seriously arouse the world around it.
Consisting of guitarist/vocalist Andy Barrott, bassist/vocalist Sion Bailey, and drummer Caradoc Tyler, The Dukes Of Bordello grab the most tenacious and infectious muscular traits from every aspect of rock music you can imagine. Rockabilly, punk rock, hard rock, and psychobilly all lay among numerous strains mixed with pure rock ‘n’ roll revealing its various decades of evolution. It results in a sound which seems familiar, like an old friend, but hits and incites with something new and bold at every twist and turn. It is dirty and trashy, inventive and skilfully resourceful like a mix of The Wildhearts, Danish outfit Grumpynators, and Canadian duo The Black Frame Spectacle and fuelling one hell of a first full-length to build on the well-received release of their 7 track self-financed Skullduggery EP/mini album of 2014.
Released physically via Death Or Glory Records and digitally by Undead Artists Records, Lowdown ‘N’ Dirty quickly shows why The Dukes Of Bordello have been firing up zealous support through gigs and festivals these past couple of years with opener All In The Name Of Rock’N’Roll. Instantly a feverish hook lays its claim to ears as the song swings into view, rhythms soon thumping their persistence as vocals incite with their own anthemic roar. Not for the last time, the twanging bass of Bailey is manna for these particular instincts and passions, it’s dulled but vibrant throb the pulsating vein around which the guitar of Barrott flames and sears the senses. The song itself is exactly as it says on the tin, seeded in and brewed with the same intent and swiftly commanding a mutual energy and involvement from body and spirit of the listener, thoughts easily imagining from the encounter alone that the band live is a dangerously commanding puppeteer of energy and stamina.
The following Hellvis is no different, a devilish infestation of ears and hips with an organic demand of both as swinging beats and biting hooks infest with a bordering on toxic infectiousness. As its predecessor, in some ways there is open familiarity to the track yet nothing about it is anything other than new and unpredictable; the same applying to next up Doing Just Enough, a slice of throbbing rockabilly nurtured romping swinging from controlled strolling to unbridled gang vocal arousal with fluid ease.
Wreckin’ Ball (Into The Pit) has a psychobilly snarl to its ballsier incitement straight after, vocals and rhythms again leading the addictive punk scented resourcefulness of the rapacious song though that steely yet almost primordial tone and character of Bailey’s bass is the prime fingering of lust sparked.
Through the addiction laying Down In The Gutter with its wiry groove woven web of boisterous hook ridden seduction and the stalking revelry of King Of The Road the album only tightens its grip. The first is an out and out stomper whilst its outstanding successor is a predacious but again relentlessly contagious compulsion on ear and heart with its dirty tarmac eating, heavy rock pounding drive. Classic and hard rock collude with more rockabilly/psycho nurtured exploits, it all coming together in a ravenous adventure before She’s My Witch shares its sultry hex like a rabidly seductive temptress with bold energy seized rhythmic hips and sonically flirtatious devilment at work. As the previous song, it quickly has a hand on best song honours, eventually having to share but never relinquishing a finger on the prize even as tracks like The Devil Rides Out feverishly serenade the imagination with its smouldering heart but forceful ingenuity. Eventually coming to its own head of ear rushing rock ‘n’ roll, the beguiling encounter has the body hooked and bouncing with increasing dexterity; the passions again in tow.
Come Back Wilko (All Is Forgiven) simply sparks with the enterprise and tenacity not forgetting the richness of rock ‘n’ roll found in its name checked inspirations; hitting and repeatedly pushing the sweet spot from start to finish while Born To Die ‘steals’ from a host of classic encounters to inspire its own distinct and individual bluesy espionage guiding body and spirit to fresh reactions and inhibition free arousals.
Bringing the album to a mighty finish, Scream If You Wanna Go Faster is a rollercoaster of virulent rock ‘n’ roll with a sizeable line in pop rock and rockabilly infectiousness which as you would rightly assume is quite irresistible leaving the lungs gasping for air and a greed for more rushing back to the play button.
In many ways it is hard to say that Lowdown ‘N’ Dirty is particularly unique yet in the same way it is impossible to say there is anything predictable or previously well-worn about it. The Dukes Of Bordello have a sound and presence which is as fresh and arousing as anything out there and now an album which will firmly slap the band on the biggest rock ‘n’ roll maps.
Lowdown ‘N’ Dirty is out now physically through Death Or Glory Records and @ http://thedukesofbordello.bigcartel.com/product/skullduggery with its digital outing courtesy of Undead Artists Records @ https://undeadartists.bandcamp.com/album/lowdown-n-dirty
Pete RingMaster 28/06/2017
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