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We have to say, that lots of the time, when a band is touted as being some lost heavy psych or proto-metal classic, it often eventually turns out to sound sonically more like blues rock or bar rock, with merely HINTS of that psychedelic heaviness that lured us in, in the first place. Such is most definitely NOT the case with obscure French psychedelic rockers Les Goths, who within one track, establish themselves as a serious sonic juggernaut, obviously beholden to Hendrix and Cream and Blue Cheer, and yeah, with hints of sixties blues rock, but with a tendency for wild super distorted guitar playing and wicked bombastic drumming and dramatic vox, not to mention a raw, in-the-red production which only enhances the band’s fierce sound. Some of us were definitely reminded of sixties Swedish psych trio Baby Grandmothers, and anyone who bought their now out of print reissue on Subliminal Sounds (and that was a whole lot of you!) is for sure gonna want this. Check out the first song and see if you’re not totally sold, a four minute non-stop blast of buzz drenched riffage and effects soaked garage psych pound, the guitars thick and distorted, the drums WAY up in the mix, the vox too, everything reverbed and echoey and a little blown out, some wild psychedelic leads, a total lost classic garage psych classic for sure. We’ve probably listened to this track a hundred times since we first got this in, it’s the sort of track that would steal the show on any vintage psych comp, in fact it’s the sort of track that would inspire someone to CREATE an obscure psych comp. The song gets more and more distorted and druggy as it goes, we dare say worth the price of admission alone. But once you get over being obsessed with that track (if you ever do), there’s lots more here to dig into.
Tracks like “I Remember” are bluesy groovers, displaying the band’s love of groups like the Animals, but even here, the sound is a little twisted, the arrangements a bit off kilter, with a little bit of that girl group vibe, cool soaring harmony vocals, with some super intense about-to-crack lead vox, all hazy and dreamy, and then the band slip right back into something a bit heavier and more propulsive like “Out Of The Sun” with its low slung bass groove, wild tangled guitars and chaotic super busy drumming, the whole thing sort of sun baked and druggy, with some cool churning chuggy riffage surfacing throughout.
The rest of the record offers up more of the same, long stretches of brooding bluesiness, groovy psychedelic shuffles, and pounding garage-y stomps, in equal measure, always with some killer guitar work and easily some of the best drumming we’ve heard, which had us wishing there was a way to nominate Les Goths drummer Bruno Frascone as should have/could have been drum legend. Consider him so nominated! One of our favorite new garage / psych reissues for sure!
Like with all Shadoks releases, plenty of rare photos, lyrics and liner notes.