They say the early 90’s were the early 70’s revisited. Think: sleazy boogie, long hair, velvet flares, skinny girls…
Well, BAD TOUCH revisits both times when they kiss the sky this summer. The Black Crowes were the Stones of their day. BAD TOUCH are the Crowes of the 20’s.
The British [Norfolk] rock band BAD TOUCH play banging New Wave of Classic Rock numbers — at maximum volume — with heavy bits of blues thrown-in. And they release their next studio album, titled “Kiss The Sky” on June 19 2020.
Recorded produced and mixed by Nick Brine (Coldplay, The Darkness, Snow Patrol) at the legendary Rockfield Studios, Monmouth Wales (Queen, Oasis) and mastered by Pete Maher (U2, Paul Weller) the grainy-voiced frontman Stevie Westwood had this to say about their newest disc: “We’re so excited about this recording […] in our humble opinion this is our most exciting recording to date and we can’t wait to get it out there in front of a crowd.”
Album opener “Come a Little Closer” has a dandyish guitar-riff and smeary vocals. It’s steamy, with fab backing vocals — and is Stonier than a stonemason’s flint-jar at a Sticky Fingers convention — as it comes jam-packed with a singalong chorus and insistence every step of the way.
“I Get High” has a melodious opening riff and vampy swagger. It has a thunderous groove, a tantalizing background sound, and a guitar that cuts like a knife. The lead vocals are sandsoap and suet, though the lyrics articulate at savvy speed so it seems that, what needs to be said, can’t wait.
The first single from the album, titled “Strut” (video shared below) squashes squishy guitar licks with glue and gravel vocals to bring a hymn-like, gospel prayer of petition to the holy church of rock. It’s a plea, yeah, a plea to the congregation. Reverend Stevie wants to see the audience swagger! So this prayer has mojo, it has frills, it has slink,… most of all, it has roar.
“I’ve Got the Music In Me” is the only non-Bad Touch penned number on the disc. Mister “Bias” Boshell wrote this for Kiki Dee, back in 1973. The song adapts well to the stubble / furry-chinned vocal treatment, as Stevie rips the knickerbockers from it’s velvety legs, to turn it into a knotty, hyper-masculine proclamation.
Title track “Kiss The Sky” has an input riff embellished by some clever lead guitar stenciling, and a welly-boot stomp. The chorus is a splendid manifesto of energies and intentions and incorporates the most oxidizing guitar solo you will have heard this side of the acid river.
“See You Again” is a soft, smooth and emollient number featuring some beautiful piano play by Bob Fridzema (formerly of King King, now touring with Joanne Shaw Taylor, Sari Schorr) and is about the loss of a dear friend. Stevie’s earthy nitrocalcite voice stands out on this track. It’s a loving, affectionate hug.
“Read All About It” has dazzling guitar patterns and interspersed, interpleading lyricism. The main vocal is as tense as a combatant before a big fight… he’s in a gloomy & contemplative mood — but the song reaches maximum catharsis when Rob (guitars) brings forth an uncontrollable and irrepressible outpouring of reparation. Is this a purging? Yes. Does it bring pain? No. This song builds strength.
“Kiss The Sky” is an album that comes stuffed with vibrancy, bombilation, feelgood tension, supersized hooks, tireless backing vocals, classic riffs, a bit of a boogie-style hokeypokey, and lots of purposeful resolution. In other words, it’s a helping of good,, old-fashioned, rock joy. Top notch!
Words: @neilmach 2020 ©