It might sound like a brawl in a trailer park dumpster but that suits Cold Beverage just fine. This Delta-bound blues duo scrawl, wreck and thrash through an album of trash heavy Americana with hints of 60’s psychedelia.
Gasoline, booze, turpentine, serpents, hard times, bad minds, tough knocks and pulled triggers, every Bible belt trope gets thrown in. They get mixed up with drums that rank power over prowess and guitar tones that bleed out of speakers. And if all of that sounds like the right kinda fun, then Hot Wax is the record for you. It’s aggressive and mean, primal and lean, and worthy of wry smiles and kicks.
Lucky for us, and for Cold Beverage too, lazy White Stripes comparisons are out-dated. Since then (or at least since the best of them) we’ve had Black Keys, The Pack A.D., Black Diamond Heavies, Whisky Stain and Royal Blood, and that’s just some of the acts worth a mention. Take the loosest and least polished of all the above, add the foot stomp and punch of each duo, throw it all in with a mean streak of raw and that’s what we get from this album.
Is it pretty? Hell no. And it’s not always great. But it never sounds less than exciting. ‘Hard Times‘ is a stripped splashed up jangle of riffs that throws blues against Woodstock guitars. There’s something more than satisfying about hearing rock jams getting drowned out by huge 60’s wailing. ‘Not This Time‘ is a thick sludge of feedback and holler that’s as joyous as it is uncaring. Trying to find structure in this hot mess of noise is like hunting needles in a fuckstack. ‘Drinking The Stone’ is another rough gem in album that’s blasted with grime.
And it’s that sense of screw you that wins through. These are frantic loud songs that are half strung together, that could fall apart any moment. Maybe that’s why we keep listening, we’re just waiting for songs to implode. But they rarely, if only twice do. For the main it’s sweet jam of snakeoil and grind that belongs in a burnt down house party (which incidentally, they came close to doing).