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Lick Lick: Lick Lick

The Austin, Texas band describe their music as "Prunk" or preppy (it ought to be proggy) punk or just doing what they like to do and enjoying themselves whilst not taking themselves too seriously. Influenced by people like Zappa and Mr Bungle (I think they mean the mister man rather than the band!) the album is full of madcap but insanely infectious songs and riotous punk-rock attacks. "Bad pet" sets the scene with a crazy vocal complete with mad laughter and hysterical proclamations. "Rolling Pin" shows their sense of irony with Mo Pierce keeping her face straight as she delivers this demonstration of stern womanhood which sounds like a cross between Gentle Giant, Dr Nerve and the Sex Pistols! "Male Pattern Drunkenness" presents the other point of view.

Layers of keyboards and the multiple time changes let you know that this music is punk in attitude only, there's plenty of prog moves going on even if they are all rather in-yer-face. "One of us" is a fine example with its withering guitar, heavy Hammond chords and violent changes in direction. Matt Kelly's screaming vocal add to the overall madness. Mo's back on the next track in an almost rap-like vocal to a dirge to drink-culture. The back line have to work hard throughout this album to control the delivery of the manic compositions and Jason Davis and Phil White do a sterling job. Bassist Davis comes to the fore especially in the threatening "Imprecationist", pounding sonic nails into your skull underneath Kelly and Pierce's violent vocal harmony. Could be the highlight of the album for me - if you ever feel like raging at the world (or just your kids), this is the track for you. "Clownselling" and the next work thrive on their odd meters (with some particularly impressive guitar from Eric Roach on "Misery". Compared to those, "Squib" is almost straight heavy blues-rock with spoken vocals. "Dirgy" almost departs into psychedelia for its opening structure before hammering your coffin down in the final section while the last track is a sheer, potty, free for all with a tongue in cheek (or in the kisser if you listen closely) lyric about the band itself.

Overall this album isn't for the musically squeamish; it's the Sweeney Todd of rock, grinding as it does two particularly polar musical styles into a nonetheless interesting final product.

Track Listing
1. The bad pet
2. Rolling pin
3. Male pattern drunkenness
4. One of us
5. The drinking and the drunk
6. The imprecationist
7. Clownselling
8. The misery of aplenty
9. Squib
10. Dirgy
11. Team thong

Added: May 27th 2008
Reviewer: Richard Barnes
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2925
Language: english

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