Some people felt that Jim Morrison in his whisky induced poetic attempt at profound thought was taking free thought to far and that he was, perhaps, disillusioned to the world. None of them took a moment to comment on how utterly brilliant his psychedelic vocals were bathed in the light of Robby Krieger’s licks and Ray Manzarek’s organ (the instrument, stick with me here).
For those who think they swaggering voice and drunken blues were too much and I’m wrong, go listen to a Clear Channel radio station for “safe music.” Everyone else, prepare for the unexpected genius that is The Bad Joke That Ended Well.
Listening to The Bad Joke That Ended Well with headphones on and your eyes closed instantly transports you to images of the blues/poetry glory days of LA Rock. Raw, raunchy and rough around the edges, the six from Bristol have crafted a sound that challenges mainstream music. On first go around it is not hard categorize the “psychedelic garage Sci-Fi Americana blues” as, shall we say, unique. Abrasive and drunken, like Morrison and Cobain slinging quotes at each other at 4am after a night of drunken chaos, you’ll be in utter awe just being in its presence before you even realize the murky confines in which you are now tied to.
And it is absolutely brilliant.
The air about The Bad Joke That Ended Well is easily misconceived as novice and random. The eight tracks cling to a cleverness that must be sought out. Alex Studer’s vocals stream through as heavy headed and almost slurring but should not be passed off as weak. His ability to move through each track with originality in fact helps shape what makes The Bad Joke so great. John Turner, Matthew Davies and Jason Strickland melt into a cohesive instrumentation. The backbone of the sound, however, does not come from Studer’s vocals, Turner’s Guitar, Davies’ drums or Strickland’s bass. No. At the forefront of my mind is Eduardo Vizan Tascon simply transcendent organ playing.
With a keen eye for the genuinely original sound, indie label Stolen Body Records is releasing this sophomore album. From “Journey Man” to “Strangler” each track is one piece of a vintage blues covered psychedelic journey. Intensely memorable and evocative, The Bad Joke That Ended Well struggles to convince me there is anything remotely bad about the album.