“We don’t have a singer because we couldn’t find one that would stand behind the drummer. But we don’t need a vocalist anyway. The music speaks for itself. We use the music so we don’t have to say I Love You” – Adam Olsson (TGTB)
Few bands the past few years have reached out and grabbed me by the neck like The Good The Bad. I was fortunate enough to see them by chance at a Strummerville showcase at SXSW a few years back, and have been a fan ever since. The premise is simple, a three piece surf rock/flamenco group from Denmark, Adam Olsson on lead guitar, Manoj Ramdas on baritone guiar, and Johan Lei Gellett on drums, but the end result is anything but simple. They don’t mince words, because they don’t use any, the closest thing to lyrics in any given song may be some background audio of a woman bringing a little orgasm to the audio mix. Sex is at the heart of the band, from the driving rhythms and gyrating bridges to the in your face album art. I mean seriously, that header image is one of the most memorable album covers you’ll see in your life.
Each of their songs is named sequentially, starting with 001, their first album is of course called, From 001 to 017, with the two later albums bringing in 18 to 33 and 34 to 50 respectively. The first 17 tracks lay down a very impressive debut onto the scene, from out right rockers to much slower subdued numbers. 008 (directly above) is the stand out here for me, with its very subversive, prowling feel, and teasing little moments of calm in between barrages.
From the second set, there are three stand outs, 019 (top of the page), 026 above, and 033 below. 019, has a little bit of everything that makes this band. A simple yet effective opening that lets you know what the score is, a dash of sexiness, and a song that just screams to be played with the windows down. 026, prances in with its playful opening hook progression, then the drums drop in letting you know it’s about to take off, then the moaning starts. What follows is a very fun play between the band and a very happy lady. The shifting gears of the song keep things spry, and the sputtering of the drums really sells the exchange between the band and their recipient of such joy. 033 plays more to some of their other sounds, with a very imposing organ introduction, giving way to a Spanish horn, and a their most majestic track yet. It’s almost as if all of the trials and tribulations of the rest of the album were building to this epic spaghetti western finale.
Their third album however is my favorite, and I’ll be really honest, it’s because a lot of it sounds like the best fucking Mega Man soundtrack never made. Seriously, listen to 034 right below here, and tell me that it doesn’t scream Mega Man, ok, well a horny Mega Man who gave zero fucks about saving humans, and just wanted to blow Dr. Wiley’s head off his shoulders while looking cool at the same time, so maybe these tracks are more about Zero? I digress.
Yes, the video is a very corny, but you’re not here for the video, you’re here for the music. If that one didn’t convince you, how about 035 below here. Everything from the repeating rhythm to the drum fueled bridge screams side scrolling 8-bit mayhem. Beyond that though, the song stands on it’s own as an amazingly solid bit of auditory bliss.
I have to give The Good The Bad credit for giving zero fucks. They excel in their very particular sound in a way that few bands ever do, and they do it with such a balls out flair. At times it seems like their sole intention is to get all people’s juices flowing in the pursuit of a good time, be it with the one you love, the one you just met, or a guitar. That kind of dirty honesty is sorely lacking these days. They are who they are, they play what they play, if you don’t like it, then get out of the fucking way. If you are looking for something to spice up your playlist, you should sincerely look at picking up some The Good The Bad, your mojo will thank you.