bel•lig•er•ent (b -l j r- nt) – adj.
1. Inclined or eager to fight; hostile or aggressive.
2. Of, pertaining to, or engaged in warfare.
Have you ever wondered about the meanings of some words? Words that you use, roughly in context, but without a firm grasp of the background and true definition of the word? The first word that came to mind on first listen to Bad Guys was “belligerent”. As it turns out, the definition appears to be pretty much bang on the money. The Bad Guys sound, as their name might suggest, is hostile and aggressive and, in some respects, these guys sound as though they’re waging a musical war against lameness and mediocrity.
According to their biography Bad Guys are “a Midlander, a Southerner, a Canadian and a Hungarian. Three necks, two kicks and no mic stand. Long hair, grey hair, bald-heads and beards”. Based in London it seem the band have been operating largely under the radar having numerous releases under their belts and appearances at no less than three ATP events yet remain largely unknown on a wider scale. With this new album they seem intent on changing that and kicking in a few doors…and faces along the way.
The Bad Guys sound pulls from stoner, doom, classic rock and punk to produce a furious barrage of obnoxious riffs and propulsive drumming all topped off with an intimidating, barrel-chested, hardcore vocal roar. The Bad Guys platform is laid out from the start of opening track “Brick Toothpick” and rarely lets up in pace or intensity through to final track “Hurl” whether they’re charging ahead at full speed on “My Love Is Disgusting” or grinding as on “Alcowhore” through to the almost NWOBHM influenced “Witness A New Low”. Subtlety is thin on the ground and Bad Guys clearly aren’t trying to change the world through peaceful means. Instead they have Bono and Chris Martin strapped to chairs in a damp basement and are beating them with baseball bats whilst drinking cheap beer and listening to The Melvins!!! The production only serves to accentuate the stripped down nature of the Bad Guys sound in its no frills, band in the room with some fuck off big amps kind of way.
At only nine songs it isn’t the longest album in history but the sheer relentless nature of the album leaves you feeling battered and raw by the end. Any longer and it may start becoming intolerable!!! This is a band that can surely never play more than 45 minutes live without wringing themselves out completely. The Bad Guys’ Motorhead meets Harvey Milk onslaught may not be for everyone and certainly not for those whose tastes run to something a little more esoteric but for a 40 minute drunken, violent rampage this is a pretty good soundtrack.
Scribed by: Ollie Stygall