@Planetmosh reviews @_PeckhamCowboys out Feb 14th on @CargoRecords
The collective group of rawk ‘n’ roll outlaws known as The Peckham Cowboys are not a tribute to Delboy and Rodney – although they may take some of their inspiration from the exploits of the brothers Trotter: no, these wild ‘n’ reckless Sarf Lahndon blooze rockers are a collection of reprobates who have been kicking around the scene for quite some time, kickin’ up dust and the ass outta fans and venues alike with unremitting abandon.
Formed back in 2010 when Quireboys co-founder Guy Bailey hooked up with former DNA Doll vocalist Marc Eden (who most famously spent some time in ‘The Project’ before that transmogrified into Velvet Revolver) and guitarist Dale Hodgkinson. That incarnation of the band – completed by a battered old drum machine – released a debut album, ‘Flog It!’ in 2011…
Fast forward two and a bit years (and via a mysterious court case which forced Eden to keep a low profile for much of 2012), and the original posse of rapscallions have been joined by more like-minded hallions, in the form of guitarist Timo Kaltio (formerly of Hanoi Rocks and Izzy Stradlin’s band), Bailey’s fellow Quireboy Nigel Mogg on bass, Primal Scream’s Duncan McKay on horns and keys and drummer Ryan McCormick to release this collection of booze-soaked, blues-fuelled stories from the sleazy underbelly of the rock ‘n’ roll life.
It’s an album that struts and swaggers across the barroom floor with bravado and self-assured panache, drawing on a glam punk heritage that stretches back to Dr Feelgood and The Faces through to the cowpunk musings of Hank Williams III, infused with a wicked sense of humour and a cheeky disregard for formality and authority. This is displayed early on with the dark earthiness of ‘Not Guilty!’ – recalling Eden’s prolonged brush with the long arm of the law – which was recorded live (in a school hall!) and simply oozes with hip-swinging, smooching vigour, from the guttural guitar riff through the prancing jive of McKay’s horns and Eden’s laid-back vocal snarl.
‘Bromley Girls’ is a lowdown, dirty blues rock paean to the back’s south-east London rearing, while the organ-led reggae-ish ‘The Debt Collector’ is the sort of song that no doubt will quickly establish itself as a singalong favourite at live shows. ‘Don’t Damn The Hypnotist’ maintains the reggae feel as it caresses your ears with its haunting dub vibe, while ‘Quarantined’ is built on a wall of distorted guitars combined with a bluesy harmonica and a funky bass riff. ‘Poor Boy Blues’ is a stonking, punchy slow blues, very much in the vein of early Dr Feelgood mixed with The Quireboys, while ‘You’re Only In It For The Money’ grooves and slides it’s way around the dancefloor with the practised precision of a cheap-suited gigolo and the lazy drawl of ‘She Was Sweet On Me’ drips and oozes sordid sex appeal.
The album closes with the dance thump of ‘Cut It Out’ and the gritty, hungover pound ‘n’ ground bar room brawl of the suitably punchy ‘Knocked Senseless’, to round off a collection of songs that is eclectic in its mix of sounds but at the same time a well-crafted and rounded in its character and delivery.
With ’10 Tales…’ scheduled for a Valentine’s Day release, this is the essential soundtrack for every red rose button-holed lover of the rougher, sleazier, dirtier side of honest-to-goodness no frills rawk debauchery.
Not Guilty! / Bromley Girls / The Debt Collector / Don’t Damn The Hypnotist / Quarantined / Poor Boy Blues / You’re Only In It For The Money / She Was Sweet On Me / Cut It Out / Knocked Senseless
Recommended listening: Poor Boy Blues
’10 Tales From The Gin Palace’ is released on Cargo Records on February 14.