We are not sure how big the Brazilian psychobilly scene is but if Bad Luck Gamblers are anything to go by, it is a bold and raucously creative pasture. The trio from Sao Paulo make a riotously enjoyable taster for it with their new album, Casino Maldito, a stomping proposal sure to be a constant involvement in our playlists hereon in and inciting a greedy appetite to know and hear more of the scene it is bred from.
Formed in 2004, Bad Luck Gamblers infuse their psychobilly exploits with just as potent strains of rockabilly, country, and punk rock; it all entangling into virulent slices of rock ‘n’ roll in thrilling evidence on their second album. Its predecessor Don’t Bet on Us appeared in 2008; a well-received debut chosen by their homeland’s music magazine Rockpress as one of the top 25 Brazilian underground albums of that year. Equally live the band has increasingly impressed and whipped up a fevered fan base, sharing stages with the likes of Slim Jim Phantom, Frantic Flintstones, Mad Sin, AstroZombies, and Gorilla among a great many. 2010 saw Bad Luck Gamblers make their first European tour with shows in France, Holland, Germany, and Belgium playing the Sjock festival as part of their successful venture. Casino Maldito will ensure the band is keenly welcomed back over this side of the globe and that a great many more eager ears are aware of the threesome of vocalist/guitarist Joe Marshall, who we thank for bringing his band to our attention, slap bassist/backing vocalist Maniac Biffs and drummer Renan Pigmew.
The album’s title track kicks things off, Casino Maldito an addictive liquor of spicy grooves and flirtatious rhythms prone to fiery outbursts of tempestuous mischief. Vocally and with his invasive hooks, Marshall snares ears, the rhythmic dance of his companions equally as compelling as twists and turns come with salacious enterprise. Biff’s slaps are like a puppeteer for feet, Pigmew’s tenacious beats boisterous bait whilst combined the trio seize body and spirit with their devilish stomping.
From the contagious mayhem of the opener, the album intensifies its temptation through Like a Bat. It uncages an even more intensive nagging of body and senses, its rousing persuasion and infernal swing cored by a delicious hook swiftly infesting the imagination and passions with vampiric hunger before 8% uncages its own attitude loaded roar. Like a mix of Demented Are Go and Zombie Ghost Train, the song has the body leaping eagerly in union with its own physical prowess. A cowpunk spicing just adds to the fiercely agreeable romp, the album getting better and bolder with every passing minute.
The darker threat of Terror Train is next; its carnally visceral character equipped with toxic grooves and predatory rhythms as well as a mix of melodically nurtured ingredients carrying a Batmobile lining to their seduction. The track is a snarling beast welcomingly preying on the imagination and setting it up for the tangy gasoline fuelled Rusty T-Bucket. The band discover yet another hook to drool over, bass slaps and swinging beats courting it’s tempting as Marshall vocally romps in the midst of it all.
Thylacinus Attack provides the instrumental suggestiveness all good psychobilly releases conjure, the guitar painting a picture as rhythms bounce before the country infused Somebody Stole my Pet Possum mischievously dances in ears with a grin on its creative face and straight after Drinking with the Devil strikes it’s sinister deal with the dark one in a melodic waltz of bedlam bred rhythms and an evolving landscape of fevered melody driven revelry and sultry seduction.
The variety in the Bad Luck Gamblers sound ensures the album is a bag of pleasing diversity continued in the wiry web of enterprise that is Shoulder Mount, a punk bred encounter with imposing rockabilly seeded riffs and raw surf hued melodies. As with all tracks, there is no escaping the freely given involvement of feet and hips with the track, a submission just as eagerly shred with closing track No Chips No Chicks, another cowpunk lined romp to get breathless over. The fact that its richly enjoyable presence is the weakest moment of Casino Maldito shows the quality and might of the album, the song bringing the release to a fine, greed sparking conclusion.
Casino Maldito is a must for all psychobilly/rock ‘n’ roll fans and Bad Luck Gamblers a band deserving the luck to bring them to global attention within the genre. Meanwhile we are off to explore what other treats lay within the Brazilian scene, come join us.
Casino Maldito is available now via Hot Jail Records @ https://badluckgamblers.bandcamp.com/releases
Pete RingMaster 28/02/2017
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