Artist: Loose Sutures
Album: Sado Sex for Dummies
Label: Electric Valley Records
Release Date: May 26, 2023
Location: Sardinia, Italy
Loose Sutures gives us a refreshing reminder that not only is rock not dead, but it’s going just as strong as it ever has even if it isn’t reviving the major airtime it deserves. The band continue this year’s trend of Italy churning out banging album after banging album. Either there’s something fresh in the water there or the rest of the world is finally catching on to just what we’ve all been missing out on.
The Italians give us monstrously powerful riffs, catchy hooks, bluesy swagger, and classic lyrics commanding vocals. These elements are drawn from a wide range of influences ranging from classic 70s psychedelic rock and punk to stoner, desert, garage and fuzz rock, even pulling some traditional doom elements into the mix. All of this is tied together by old school, DIY sounding production that gives the album a dated feeling (in the best way possible).
There’s a fantastic combo of lyrical themes ranging from the occult to sexual kinks, and all mired in a haze of sleaze and bong smoke. The delivery of these themes is spot on, it takes on the embodiment of Satanic Panic, showcasing everything that a repressed conservative Christian society feared (and still does fear). There’s a sense of rebellion, freedom and of excess on this album that makes it feel fresh and exciting in the same way that acts such as Uncle Acid did when I first heard their music.
The vocals are definitely a key draw card on the album, giving us a blend of psychedelic mystery mixed with bluesy swagger. All of this is amplified by the faded, washed-out mastering used on them, making them feel as if they are being recorded in a dimly lit, marijuana smoke-filled studio. Vocals aside though the guitar on the album is excellent and hooks you from start to finish. There’s just so many killer riffs and such a great tone employed that sits right between crunchy fuzz and crisp piercing sharpness. The band knows exactly when to lean in which direction, and the two balance each other out perfectly.
The guitars are amplified further by the sloppy (not in a bad way)/loose drumming style that I absolutely love in stoner rock. It makes it all feel so much more authentic and rawer, also bringing a unique tone to the music. We also get some fantastic (despite being short lived) drum solo moments. The bass on the album also amplifies it’s overall sound, adding some real groove and depth of sound, while also amplifying its overall level of sleaze.
While this may seem like a copout, my favorite track on the album is its leading single Kinky Katy, featuring the one and only Alain Johansson. The track just has such an incredible level of groove to it that it worms its way into your brain and has you coming back time and time again. The vocal delivery on the track is also high energy and pretty damn powerful. It’s the guitar work that really hammers it home on this one though and Alain really brings his Midas touch in here. In stark contrast my other favorite track is White Line, which is a far darker, more brooding offering with a slow pace and heavy atmosphere.
Overall, this is one hell of an album and one that deserves to be played loudly and proudly. Please educate your friends and show them that rock isn’t going anywhere, in fact it’s buckling down and making dirty music like this.
Listen to and order the album: