ALBUM REVIEW: The Vicious Cycles – Motorcycho (Pirates Press Records)
The Vicious Cycles are a five-piece from Vancouver, Canada, who produce one of the headiest brews of garage punk and dirty rock ‘n’ roll that I’ve heard in ages.
They’re a new name to me, but I gather from their Bandcamp page that this is their third album, and it’s a blistering set of 12 songs which you’ll want to listen to again as soon as it’s finished.
Available on two lovely variants of coloured vinyl, it’s a hook-heavy record full of singalong moto anthems, influenced by British punk legends like The Clash and Cock Sparrer, as well as garage bands such as Thee Headcoats and The Mummies.
As you might expect with such antecedents, there’s lots of riffs, big choruses, and tunes which grab you by the lapels of your leather jacket and demand to be listened to.
Billy Bones (guitar, lead vocals), Norman (theremin and keyboards), Beardo (bass, vocals), Nick the Knife (guitar, vocals) and Bad Ben (drums) create an enjoyable racket which fairly roars its way out of the speakers.
Only one of the tracks (Thrill Seeker) tops three minutes; most are around the two-minute mark, but there’s not a second wasted as the Cycles hit you between the eyes with their high-octane sound.
The marvellously dumb Truck Stop Nun (“she’s a truck stop nun, she’s a hot cross bun”), and the crazed rockabilly of Be My Bird are all excellent songs which will make you want to jump on a two-wheeler and burn up some highway.
After a few listens my favourite track after a few listens is If It Looks Like A Cop (“if he looks like a cop, and he walks like a cop, and he talks talks talks like a cop, he’s probably a cop”, though that’ll probably change after I’ve lived with this album for a while. 8/10.