The Last Vegas - 2009 - Whatever Gets You Off
1. Whatever Gets You Off
2. I'm Bad
3. High Class Trash
4. Loose Lips
6. Cherry Red
7. Another Lover
8. Dirty Things You Do
9. White Lies
10. Love Me Bad
11. Outta My Mind
'Whatever Gets You Off', The Last Vegas' major label debut is a testament to its name. It's all for you. The veneer, the bite, the words and the way. It doesn't matter everything it's not – deep, profound, new, varied. Everything they do, everything they play, it's designed simply to get your rocks off. Or rather, get your rock on. And it succeeds.
The music wears its influences on its sleeve – in fact, it is not much more than its influences: AC/DC, Motley Crue, Aerosmith, the usual crowd. It might not try to be anything wildly original but what is has done is mixed up its progenitors' sounds and style, streamlined it, and formulated it into an album's worth of very high class-low class rock songs. The most impressive thing about the album is its consistency. There is not a single bad song, as you would expect to hear by a relatively new name (now with Nikki Sixx's endorsement) to the sleaze scene. You might expect a decent, solid-more-often-than-not selection, but instead you get some genuinely encouraging bona-fide balls-out rock and roll and sunset streetglam, one of the most promising new wave of sleaze albums in the last few years.
The songs strut their way through your ears, the accompanied music videos only cementing what you could already hear – songs full of swagger, Jagger-posturing, and hip-writhing serpentine sleaze that slinks along like back-alley rip-jeaned youth with bandanas on the brow and dirt on the brain.
The title track sashays out first on the glam catwalk, swanking up to you with irresistable raunch, beckoning you into the fray with a crooked finger. All slick-grit guitars, pumping backbeat and impure vocals. A descent into scurrilous oily rock hasn't seemed so tempting in some time.
I'm Bad, which quickly follows on the opener's cowboy heels, is an album highlight. A celebration for the scoundrel in us all, it plays the villain with real enjoyment, testifying against the sanctimonious in its rousing middle-finger-and-a-wink chorus of “I'm bad, it's true, there's a little bit of me in every one of you... You can say that I'm the devil and there's nothing you can do about it.” Nope, there's none of us that are free from the sweet corruption here.
Loose Lips is another gem, a definite old-school groover, that immediately sets your shoulders a-swaggering and a pout-snarl stuck on as you feel whisked away in the drench of the California sun. The slippery swing of the Stonesian guitar jumps your bones and the whiskey-smooth American singing laps away every urban shadow into a haze of sand, glitz and summertime girls.
Apologize is the album's obligatory ballad. Piano led, a Cinderella-esque heart-burner that, while perhaps a tad cheesy to those free of the 80s, is nevertheless an excellent number – reminding me in theme of Buckcherry's “Sorry” - that serves to break up from the smut of the rest of the album. Hey, these guys have feelings! Perhaps these bad boys need loving too... Or maybe it's just to lull you into a false sense of comfort before the next dose of strip-dancing raunch comes on.
This would happen to be 'Cherry Red'. “The sweeter the touch yeah...”. A magnetic traditionally-glam chorus punctuates this lubriciously rocking and tenacious song, and I can imagine it to be a live favourite. I could go through more great songs – the panache of White Lies, the smutty stomp of Love Me Bad (“The beauty of it all, you love me when I'm bad”) - but at the end of the day, if you have any taste for this kinda thing, and I hope I've already got you salivating... then this is an album you really should give a spin.
What is most interesting about this album, and this band, is that they are not riding down the same road as the new swedish sleaze sound, as so many other bands are in the scene. Instead, they seem happy to relive and reestablish the groovy, bluesy rock and roll of their influences, and it is this that (combined with their strong degree of songwriting, muscianship, sugar cane guitar leads, and especially their flair for hooks) makes them both refreshing and 'different'. It also makes them pretty damn good.
Last Updated (Monday, 01 August 2011 20:53)