Review: Loose Sutures ‘Sado Sex For Dummies’

Back in 2021, which somehow seems like a long time ago at this point, when I first started writing for The Sleeping Shaman, one of the first wave of records I reviewed was A Gash With Sharp Teeth And Other Tales, the second album from Sardinia, Italy’s, stoner, psych and garage fuzz dealers Loose Sutures

Loose Sutures 'Sado Sex For Dummies' Artwork
Loose Sutures ‘Sado Sex For Dummies’ Artwork

I dug the shit out of the band’s lo-fi, riffy, garage-ish rock sound, so in underscoring how crazy my perception of time is these days, I’m now reviewing their third album, Sado Sex For Dummies, almost two years later. Evidently, since we last left Loose Sutures, singer/guitarist Gianpaolo Cherchi left the band, leaving the current line-up of Antonio Pilo on guitar and vocals, Marcello Merridda on bass, and Marcus Angius on drums. Additionally, Sado Sex For Dummies features contributions from Marco ‘Grey’ Manca on guitar, and Fabio Demontis on synth.

Not that I needed an excuse, but in preparing for this review, I spun A Gash With Sharp Teeth And Other Tales to contrast the evolution of the band’s sound, especially with Pilo taking on the frontman role. One thing that stands out instantly is Loose Sutures leaning a bit more into their Queens of the Stone Age influence, hinted at on their previous album, but on Sado Sex For Dummies, that influence, while certainly on display sonically, is greatly magnified by the presence of BOTH Alain Johannes and Nick Oliveri, who undoubtedly was corralled to provide vocals, while on one of his seemingly endless European tours with his various musical outlets.

Sado Sex For Dummies wastes zero time, opening up strong with the driving riffery and distorted, melodious vocals of Highway Shooter, Pilo adding some Homme-style lead squeals, underscoring the aforementioned QOTSA influence. However, this isn’t a direct bite of that band by any stretch, as the energy, fuzz and sonics are still very much in Loose Sutures wheelhouse as their familiar sound is on display throughout.

On Another Hell, a lo-fi, distorted, garage thrust and quasi-eerie echo-y vocals flow with guitar theatrics, impeccably, including some tasty lead work that accentuates the well-established fuzz. Sadisim And Gallows meanwhile takes on a slightly somber tone, showing off some chest-rumbling bass lines from Merridda that flow well with the QOTSA-esque single-note lead work. There’s plenty of fuzzed-up riffage, and some great build up as this song reminds me a bit of upstate New York garage/stoner trio Sun Voyager.

a lo-fi, distorted, garage thrust…

White Line opens with an impossibly catchy, charging guitar riff, before dropping into a heavy, mid-tempo verse, featuring more spooky, distorted vocals. Angius steps into the spotlight here with a weird yet killer mini-drum solo, setting up for some fuzzed-up shred, before they weave their way back to the main riff. First single, Kinky Katy, featuring Alain Johannes has the aforementioned QOTSA vibes all over it, including some blatant Homme-esque guitar dramatics and plenty of soaring ‘aaahhh’ background vocals, that make Kinky Katy one of the standout tracks. I can see why the band chose this as a single.

Speaking of QOTSA, Nick Oliveri makes his presence felt performing lead vocals for He’s My Friend, a thumping, garage riffer that features plenty Oliveri-isims including going on about cocaine with his familiar manic, shouting vocal style. Honestly, while having Oliveri sing vocals on a track was most certainly a cool high point for the band, it wasn’t my favorite track despite the wicked fuzzed-up lead work.

Nonetheless, Loose Sutures return to their riffy, garage bash and crash on the penultimate Cowbell From Hell, before closer Black Star Flashing takes on a bit more somber tone that presents some awesome backbone work as both Merridda and Angius put on a distorted rhythm clinic, which in turn allows Pilo to unleash all sorts of fuzzy shred, bringing the album to a resounding and swaggering close.

As I figured I would, I enjoyed the hell out of Sado Sex For Dummies. The line-up changes didn’t dimmish the bands sound or style at all, and if anything, they’ve evolved and although the QOTSA influence is on display throughout, to say nothing of Johannes and Oliveri’s presence, complimented the band’s lo-fi, garage fuzz histrionics exquisitely.

Label: Electric Valley Records
Band Links: Facebook | Bandcamp | Instagram

Scribed by: Martin Williams