MESSER CHUPS – Surf Riders From the Swamp Lagoon (2011)

Review by: Alejandro Muñoz G
Album assigned by: Alex Alex

The album’s very first note strikes me as particularly familiar. That rich defiant reverberating guitar sound… where have I heard that before? A tune plays in my head but I can’t remember the name, it’s an instrumental… Found it! It’s 1958’s Rebel-‘Rouser by Duane Eddy, the master of twang.

Just like Duane Eddy back in the 50’s, Messer Chups seem to build their career mostly upon instrumentals, though Eddy’s were essentially rockabilly while the Chups’ are fundamentally surf rock. Eddy’s recordings almost always sounded like soundtracks for some Western film, even when they weren’t. Similarly, Messer Chups sound like a soundtrack for some old B movie. There’s an obvious reason for this: most of this album’s melodies are drawn from old films, tv shows or albums (some are instantly recognizable, others are more obscure).

What’s interesting is how all these tunes are reinterpreted and fitted into the Chups’ own twisted scenery. Swamp Lagoon is definitely not the Beach Boys’ sunny California. This is a darker, weirder and more adventurous world which sounds just like if the B52s were throwing a party in Planet Claire for the creature from the Black Lagoon.

Author: tomymostalas


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