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The Bonnevilles - Good Suits & Fightin' Boots (2008)

"goes right back to the early blues of Howlin Wolf or Willie Dixon whilst also adding in the pure energy of sixties garage punk" --- FASTFUDE

The Bonnevilles are a garage punk blues duo from Lurgan, an unlikely combination, but what a result. Andrew McGibbon Junior on guitar and vocals and Chris McMullen on drums, formerly known collectively as the Motorsounds, are part of a new wave of musicians who are reinventing the blues for people who grew up with punk and grunge, relevant.

Just a while ago I read something about The Black Keys teaming up with Billy Gibbons for some kind of a soon-to-be collaboration. Had someone played me this album, telling me that it’d already happened, I’d be foolish enough to believe. What’s more, with the Keys starting to experiment in a more-polished-than-usual way with Danger Mouse, this might as well be the replacement, as good as any for their swampier early stuff.
The album opens with a noisy Motor City-fuelled pair, an obvious explanation why the main Bonneville, Andy McGibbon, named his label the way he did. It’s from the third number, the title tune, that the above reference becomes pretty obvious. It continues throughout the rest of the album, all rooted knee-deep in the swamps of the deepest of American South, as opposed to their Northern Irish origin, and put through their own kind of ‘Honest to God Punk-Blues-Rock-’n’-Roll-Lo-Fi-Trash’! --- Goran Obradovic


Hey! Bonnevilles! Who the fck starts out their first album with an instrumental? You do, ya bastards. That takes some cojones. But while Good Suits stands tall as a powerful eleven track filler-less collection of singles it also flows album-wise, weaving from the aforementioned instro One More Nail Outta Rock n' Rolls Coffin to the souped up garage stormer Army of One to the boogieass menace of title tracker Good Suits and Fightin' Boots. No Government, No Country, No King is a slow, tense politiblues burner which is followed by The Drag which sports a similar hot slow burning, if not sexier vibe and ends with the snip of a JFK speech. The centerpiece of this work, God Might Love Me (But He Doesn't Know Me Like The Devil Does) stands as one of the tracks I found myself playing repeatedly. McMullan's simple slow tribal toms match McGibbon's on-point grungy slide work to set a resigned yet menacing tone. Acoustic roots rocker I don't Like Whiskey is a blues redeemer. Super single C'Mon is a delicious hook filled head knocker and bottle buster with it's singalong chorus raisin' hell and fuss. The Belgians Are Coming is two minutes of Dick Dale-esque red tide dirty surf perfection. The set ends with the wicked live anthem Hardtale Lurgan Blues that smokes deep and hard from fit to fin. Like my man Dj Hillfunk says "it's a slow grower" but once I locked into the turbo charged souled-out grinding alt-blues sound of The Bonnevilles I was blown up and dusted. The Bonnevilles Good Suits and Fightin' Boots easily ranks high on my short list of best albums of the year.

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