To label something a side project seems unnecessary unless you’re obsessed with a particular person or band. If you can’t accept it as another piece of work, then go right ahead: say it’s a side project. If that’s the case, then perhaps a shirt that says “I need more to do” is right up your alley. Side projects are bands just like the band they’re on the side of. With the rare exception of Nine Inch Nails’ side project Trent Reznor. See the t-shirt.

In light of recent events, Jesse Hughes has taken some time to himself to do what he does best.

Make music.

Assuming the name Boots Electric, Hughes will release Honkey Kong on September 20th.  The southern Californian and all around talented musician complied a sound, although familiar, all his own. His swaying electronically fused tracks are rich with layers and imagination. The ten track debut for Boots Electric grew out of collaboration with renowned producer Tony Hoffer and overtly talented keyboardist Money Mark. Hughes has found a safety blanket within a sound unique to him. As evident with his hugely successful part in Eagles of Death Metal, the refreshing tunes are sure to be well received.

“I Love You All The Thyme” swims in a colorfully electric waning tune as Hughes sings “I would beg/ if I thought it would make you stay.” Each track is filled with off beat digitization and experimental timing. “Boots Electric Theme,” the third track, incorporates the iconic lick from Nazareth’s “Hair of the Dog” into a punky B52’s like anthem. Whimsical swaying track after track brought together with an obvious talent makes for a comprehensively entertaining adventure. Songs like “Speed Demon” and “Trippy Blob” demonstrates Honkey Kong’s ability to keep you happy. It’s rather hard to not be amused when listening to this album. Even with thoughts like “I am troubled in the night/by the thoughts of my own life” the country-rock that is spun from this album make it one of the better this year has offered.

Call it what you may: side project; outlet; or just another endeavor, Honkey Kong is a character in and of itself. Even if this isn’t his primary focus for long, Boots Electric solidifies Hughes as the American version of a modern Bowie or Bolan.

I Love You All The Thyme by Boots Electric