This is a very casual review of an anything but casual debut release CD by Wellington band Bikini Roulette. To be totally honest with you it has arrived without a lot of fanfare or hype, but let me tell you good people, this album is a uniquely original addition to New Zealand's varied and widespread musical landscape.
Erotik Fiction kick-starts your heart with the adrenaline pumping and lyrically jumping ‘She Cut Me Loose' ... "married to a wet dream" /"smoking wreck of a playboy pet looking for dirty fun"... all wrapped around a well funky bottom end which moves nicely into 'Play Dead', in which singer Matthew Pender's "right down at the bottom, the recipe for trust" vocals play tag with guitarist Adrian Win's slippery as a snake-arse cowboy guitar licks.
|Upcoming gig: Bikini Roulette + Lady Parts|
Then we arrive at (for me anyway) one of the albums absolute highlights; 'Confessions Of You (Mini Bar Blues)' sees Pender's falsetto Prince-like delivery beautifully underplayed with an arrangement to die for - sumptuous and understated keyboards link up with a similarly tasty rhythm section - yep, this tune has “hit single” stamped all over it.
Now if this was an old fashioned LP it's time to change sides, but it's not so we won't. So onwards with 'Voodoo Suitcase' - man the stakes are rising - this is a whole lotta fun with Win's disco dirty sounding guitar leading to an absolute stampede towards that dance floor - god damn that rhythm section is super sized - yep, we're in a happy place!
The engine room - skin man Ben Chapman and bassist Anthony Lander - cook up a proverbial storm on 'Second-hand Soul'.
Normal transmission (ie funked up 'n' fully fried rock'n'roll) on 'Like No Other Man' followed by another tasty falsetto vocal delivery from Pender on the well impressive and harmony laced 'A Girl Like That' - another track with radio play written all over it.
The album’s closing track - by the way, there's no room on the dance floor now - 'When Eve Got Bored Of Apples' rounds off this adventure with Bikini Roulette quite nicely - gosh, my heels have worn down...
Well, I'm picking Erotik Fiction to be the must-have NZ CD for this fast approaching Kiwi summer. Oh, and forecasters are predicting a hot one which I'm guessing will soon be the adjective of choice for everyone to describe this slice of aural dynamite.
(Thanks Tony! ... am I the only one who knows that you’re not actually kidding about those heels? ... I just want to add that the album is also available on the band’s Bandcamp page - link below)