Tuesday 26 February 2013

THE HEALTHY BOY & The Badass Motherfuckers - Carne Farce Camisole

Album review by kev@thesoundofconfusion.co.uk

Gravelly voice, dark music, sinister lyrics, general wouldn't-trust-him-to-do-the-babysitting vibe... let's just do the Tom Waits and Nick Cave comparisons now to save with them later. He's even got his own Bad Seeds to back him. THE HEALTHY BOY & The Badass Motherfuckers is Benjamin Nerot, a French singer-songwriter accompanied here by his band, although he releases other material under a different guise. We've mentioned he's not alone in style but he does have a little extra mystery, possibly down to his accent and possibly down to him not being such a well known artist. The band name doesn't exactly lend itself to radio play, and to be honest neither does the music, not on mainstream stations anyway.

It's a Tindersticks like misery-ballad that begins 'Carne Farce Camisole'. 'Our Story's Grave' is mumbled lyrics, almost as downbeat as the human voice can get, yet the mood is lightened by a flute. An odd juxtaposition but one that works. It's really an introduction as much as a song, and things get going properly on 'Boneman' which takes blues and skiffle and sticks them together is an unorthodox manner with those vocals now sounding pure creepy. It's a standout, that's for sure and if you were to try and find something suitable for release as a single then this could be your best shot. There's acoustic blues on 'Not Gonna Lose You' which is part Howlin' Wolf and part Spacemen 3.

It's difficult not to picture overflowing ashtrays and empty bottles of whisky when listening to this album, but at points the mood does alter, even if the voice remains the same. 'Triumphs & Victories' for example, is a brilliant piece of atmospheric alt-rock, then follows the desolate 'I'll Never Take You Along In My Fall'; it's pretty bleak. 'Portrait' doesn't exactly brighten up the atmosphere either but there is another slab of uptempo rumbling in the form of 'Grapes' which is haunted psychobilly and sounds a bit possessed, before the thunderclaps and downpours of 'Hey Man!' bring the curtain down. Plenty of people out there celebrate the dark works of genius by artists like, well you know who. So unless you know them already, add these Badass Motherfuckers to your list.

HEALTHY BOY & The Badass Motherfuckers' website

Buy the album

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