Review and photography by John Bentley

It’s 60-plus years since rock’n’roll was invented and a lot of ‘new’ music just sounds like something you’ve heard before. So how great is it when you hear something that jumps out at you and says “Hey! You’ve not heard stuff like this before”. And so it is with Warmduscher. Well strictly speaking you may have heard this music before but not all in one band, as Warmduscher seem to have incorporated a whole range of genres and styles in one. Over the space of a few songs you hear bits of rock, rap, funk, punk, soul, electronics and all manner of pop and it really is exciting stuff and sounds great. They’ve been getting a fair amount of radio play and some great reviews for the new album ‘Tainted Lunch’, which even has fan Iggy Pop singing on the opening track.

Warmduscher, Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019

The Brudenell has a three bands on the Halloween menu tonight, opening with The Shakamoto Investigation, a fast and furious guitar-bass-drums punky outfit. The rhythms, beats and riffs seem to go all over the place, with some angular guitar work reminiscent of Captain Beefheart’s Magic Band. They certainly give it their all and are great fun.

The Shakamoto Investigation, Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019

The Club floor is filling by the time second support act, Lazarus Kane come on. Speaking with a southern drawl, Kane is an American residing in the UK. The adrenalin is once again quickly flowing as Kane and band leap around to some fast funky danceable rock, to which it’s difficult to keep the feet still. A confident musician (and name-dropper) who I think we will hear more of, he features his new single ‘Narcissus’, which he says was inspired while staying at Harrison Ford’s mansion back in 1998.

Lazarus Kane Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019

Warmduscher are another band related in their family tree to The Fat White Family, although currently only guitarist Adam Harmer is a member of both bands. There has been a revolving cast of band members over three albums, but the current line-up is a corker, with (American) vocalist Clams Baker a brilliant frontman in his cowboy hat and boots and tonight heavily coated in Halloween face make-up. He sings, or more accurately raps, sings and uses spoken word vocals over an ever-changing infectious backing of guitar, beats and electronics. The lyrics (when you can hear them) are decidedly sleazy (the ‘motherf*****’ word certainly crops up a bit), as you might expect from a spin-off from The Fat Whites.

The remaining band members all have whacky names: Lightnin’ Jack Everett (drums), Quicksand (Harmer on guitar), Mr Salt Fingers Lovecraft (bass) and The Witherer aka Little Whiskers (electronics / keyboard).

Warmduscher, Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019 (Clams Baker and band in Halloween make-up).

They kick-off with ‘Big Wilma’ and ‘The Salamander’, songs from the previous two albums, which sound a little more conventionally rock (with The Stooges an obvious influence) than the new album. The ‘Tainted Lunch’ album delves more into electronica and different genres and seems more focussed. First selection from ‘Tainted Lunch’ is the splendid ‘Midnight Dipper’, with its gyrating rhythm and warbly synth. The pace of the set is fast, with most songs brief and morphing into others and featuring intermittent samples dropped into the mix to form links. ‘Dream Lotion’, from the new album, takes us into Prince-like funk plus a bit of Frank Zappa-style weirdness. ‘1000 Whispers’ takes us loosely into soul territory. Meanwhile ‘Disco Peanuts’ is rock-electronica foot-tapping genius, reminiscent of (1996 single) ‘Pepper’ by The Butthole Surfers.

The encore features a memorable cheesy soul-gospel song with poppy synth, which I think was ‘Tiny Letters’ from the new album (not on band’s set list). It’s just amazing the stylistic ground this band covers in a set lasting barely an hour and what a fun gig too!

Warmduscher, Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019

Warmduscher, Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019

Setlist (taken from Band’s on-stage list): Big Wilma; The Salamander; Midnight Dipper; Whale City; Tainted Lunch; Dream Lotion; 1000 Whispers; Lady Eggs; Grape Face; Standing on the Corner; The Chimp; Burner; Fill It Don’t Spill It; I Got Friends; Disco Peanuts; Johnny’s Blue Khaki.

Warmduscher, Leeds Brudenell Social Club 31 October 2019

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