CD: 11 Songs; 41:22 Minutes
Styles: “Punk Blues,” Contemporary Electric Blues Rock, Hard Rock
What is “Punk Boogie”? It’s no secret that this magazine’s favorite topic has been mixed with rock, country, folk, jazz, and soul, but punk? That’s a new one, at least according to yours truly. Also new are a debut band from Belgium, Boogie Beasts, and their album Come and Get Me. Featuring eleven original songs, no one will be able to say this CD is derivative or cookie-cutter. Not only do they not sound like traditional blues artists, but they also don’t sound like traditional punk bands. Albert Collins and Mud Morganfield would be hard-pressed to recognize them as fellow genre artists. So would Green Day, the Clash and the Ramones. The Boogie Beasts’ music is absolutely unique – perhaps too unique for some listeners. It lacks any sense of structure, lyrical flow, or instrumental balance. Everything is all the way ON and UP, all the time.
According to their promotional information sheet, “White-hot punk Boogie defines the debut album by the Boogie Beasts from Belgium. Obviously, it is the result of blending two parts of pure coal from the depths of the country’s eastern mine pits (Jan Jaspers, guitar and vocals, and Gert Servaes, drums) with an equal amount of fiery passion from Liège, the country’s self-described ‘ardent city’ (Mathias Dalle, guitars and vocals and Fabian Bennardo, harmonica). Coal and fire equals scorching heat. Beastly passion with passionate beastliness: Boogie Beasts.”
An even more esoteric description of their music reads, “Essentially, the Boogie Beasts play naked blues, dressed in a coat with a bearded lining.” Blues fans, if that makes you scratch your head, so might the tunes on Come and Get Me. The artists themselves describe their title track as “a chain of numerous desires: tragedy, melancholy, wild lust, timid advance, blunt rejection, all- consuming passion and profound pain of love, but also a ‘so what?’ state of mind, hope, doubt, healing self-criticism, self-mockery and quiet resignation.” Wow. This reviewer doubts that even Leo Tolstoy provided such a detailed analysis of a character from War and Peace. The Beasts sure have a lot to say and play. How they say and play it isn’t common to any other band.
The only song that even comes close to sounding traditional on this CD is also its catchiest one:
Track 03: “Shake ‘Em” – Move over, Silento! Sometimes dancers don’t want to “whip” or “nae nae”. Sometimes they just want to “shake ‘em on down.” “Move it like a machine. Move it – you know what I mean. Move it. Here’s my cue. Got to make my move, get you into my groove. Gimme one more shot. Gimme all you got. Gimme something new. Gimme a sign to get down with you.” The tempo is a bit slower than Too Slim and the Taildraggers’ song along the same lines, but it’s just as catchy. Jan Jaspers’ guitar is smooth yet chaotic on the solo in the middle.
Come and Get Me is a wholly original anomaly in the blues and the punk world!