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Los Chicos - Rockpile Of Shit

  • Written by  Dave Armour

A colourfully titled sixth LP from the Madrid garage punk veterans, (with cover art depicting a sliced and diced Edmunds, Lowe and co), consisting mainly of speedy, souped up R‘n’B (or pub rock if you prefer), along with diversions into Gun Club style country punk, rockabilly, and Ramonesy lunkheadedness, with reasonably successful results.

It’s all vigorously done with deceptively catchy hooks which aren’t always immediately apparent, infectious energy, a clean, scratchy guitar sound with Johnny Thunders’ leads and occasional sax interjections.

Highlights are the cack-handed (that’s a compliment by the way) Chuck Berryisms of the title track; (which, although hard to decipher much of the lyrics, seem to relate an autobiographical on the road anecdote), the Eddie and the Hot Rods influenced opener 'Kingdom of Coolness' and the similarly energetic ‘I Know I Don’t Know’ which features a nice call and response breakdown.

‘Older and Better’ is a sax driven frat/glam hybrid (Fram?) urging us to “shake your maracas”,  with a chorus reminiscent of Black Flag’s ‘TV Party’, and the down beat ‘Night Ride’ is a welcome change of pace, slipping into Johnny Cash territory.

Overall mood is quite light-hearted (not the place to come for angst ridden introspection or railing against “the man”) and  at times does veer into novelty (‘Mommy’s on MDMA’, affected vocals on ‘Responsibility Ville’ and ‘Little Man’). Combined with a couple of slightly laboured tracks this results in an LP where quality dips in the middle but ends on a high note with the frantic blast of  ‘Toga Land’.  

Los Chicos play Tufnell Park Dome June 26th, with (yay!) Radio Birdman.

Rockpile Of Shit is available now from Dirty Water Records.

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