Album Review: Part Chimp – Drool

Heavy. Fuzzed out riffage. Primitive drums. Lots of fills. This is a good start. It’s like Black Sabbath playing The Stooges. So far so good. Who are these reprobates? Some young bucks who really don’t give a shit about your dad rock(TM) and just want to kick out the jams? Some snotty nosed young urchins who just want to rub your faces in the dirt? Some fresh faced idiots who raided their Dads metal collection? No…they are in fact a bunch of South London 40-somethings that formed in 2000 and have several albums to their name. How is this possible, and how come I’ve not heard of them before?

Drool. It’s even got a cool title this album, with the Dinosaur Jr. looking shiny painted lips oozing gobbets of saliva down its sleeve, a primal cascade of dirty pleasure. A lip-smacking, tantalising, terrifying taste of what’s to come.

There are so many instant, classic, dirty riffs on this album. It’s very grounded in grunge with elements of Mudhoney, Nirvana, Alice In Chains, etc. but also fits in with the English trend for tight but loose psych rock as practiced by the likes of  the Fierce & The Dead, Tank, Henge and Amplifier. The connections are reinforced with the inclusion of ex singer from Hey Colossus, Tim Farthing, making a guest appearance on “It’s True, Man”, sounding a little too ‘rawk’ for my liking. Shame the vocals are mixed so far back on a few of these songs that you can’t really hear what the hell they are singing about, but I guess that’s the price you pay for having such a full on assault of noise in your lugholes.

Part Chimp represent something that I feel is very important in rock ‘n’ roll and something that over the past 20 years has been kind of getting lost. Total fucking abandon. Rock music needs mess, it needs chaos. It needs balls out, edge of the seat, teeth clenching, white knuckle Total. Fucking. Abandon. Give yourself up and give in to its raw power. I have been lucky enough to experience this kind of abandon both on stage with my own band/s, and in the audience on occasion at various times (Mouses at the Ferret in Preston and Sonic Youth at Kentish Town Forum spring to mind). I call it a Mott…when the music becomes so intense and all encompassing and envelops you with volume and you are lost within it and you reach the point at which it has become impossible to stop, despite the heat and exhaustion. At that moment you turn around and shout “I’M  ‘OTT”. You have just declared a “Mott”, a situation from which there is no return and there is nothing for it but to continue to ride this megalithic beast to it’s inevitable conclusion, which very often involves smashed equipment and temporary deafness. I’m pretty sure Part Chimp are no strangers to this phenomenon. ‘We have always been on the verge of a sonic calamity’ says vocalist Tim Cedar.

If you’re already aware of Part Chimp then I envy you. If, like me, you hadn’t come across them before but you enjoy music that sounds like the apocalypse, that’s ‘pulverising’, ‘invigorating’, ‘nihilistic yet life-affirming’ then buy this album. In their press release the band state that ‘This band will demolish your house, but you’ll cheerfully thank them for it afterwards’. I’ve no doubt about it, and my address is…

Drool is out now on Wrong Speed Records – order on CD or digital download via Bandcamp.

Find out more on Part Chimps’ official website.

Review by Andrew Wood

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