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Two Too Many - Two Too Much Award winner

Two Too Many
Two Too Much
by Neil Cook at 29 January 2020, 2:58 PM

An Englishman, a couple of Irishmen and a Canadian walk into a bar in Amsterdam.  Sounds like the start of a bad joke, but in this case it isn’t. Getting together in 2015 playing CCR covers, the band evolved into their own sound of dirty heavy Blues Rock 'n Roll, with more than a bit of punk attitude.  This is their eponymous first full length offering.

From the outset, the intent is clear, to quote my hero “We play Rock and Roll!” (god rest you Lemmy).  Opening track “Tough To Love” sets their stall out, fast Hard Rock 'n Roll with swagger and a sneer. Think early GN’R attitude. “Got My Rock N’ Roll” does what it says on the tin, ROCKS.  Don’t analyze, just bang your head and dance like a loon. A guitar break Angus would be proud of, and its not hard to imagine standing on a dance floor in a sweaty club singing “I’ve got my rock and roll” with the mob.

“Kaiser’s Crown” is a slab of dirty heavy Blues, with a chugging rhythm and groove, in the mold of Clutch. The pace is relentless. “Southbound Bus” has a beat that gets into your head, probably the lightest song on the album, but damn its infectious. I mean no planes, or limos for these guys, they're on a bus, and not a swanky tour bus.  My image is them carrying on the party on the night bus home.

“The Ditch” has cowbells! ‘Nuff said. Dirty sleazy Rock. “Worse Things Have Happened” punks it up like the MC5, and then we end up in prison doing a “Five Year Stretch” with MOTORHEADF for cell mates.  “Drift Away” gives us more of that dirty heavy Blues, with a fantastic guitar solo with plenty of wah-wah pedal action. The pace is relentless, but there is enough variation to keep the listener engaged.  The songs have been crafted so well.  None more so than “This Is How We Roll”, the bands manifesto in one song. As TWO TOO MANY and the ROLLING STONES say, “This is only Rock and Roll, but we like it!”.

“Back In The Same Place Again” is an odd little tune, not in a bad way at all.  It’s a mid-paced song with both Punk and Blues sensibilities. The words and vocals carry a punky, almost New Wave vibe with another pedal laden guitar solo.  But it really works. However if this is their lighter side..…”Head To Toe” hits you like a two ton heavy thing, right between he eyes.  Its SABBATH-like bass line is amazing.  Heavy Blues in the vein of Clutch or Baleful Creed.

Last track “Call The Boatman” starts at a ponderous slow slab of heavy blues and builds in pace to a thoroughly satisfying crescendo. I find it very hard to fault this album. It is squarely in my wheelhouse with the bands I love. The quality of the songs and the musicianship stand out.  Rock 'n Roll like this has to be great to even be good, and this is very good indeed. I bet they are a blast live.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 9
Memorability: 10
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Tough To Love
2. Got My Rock N’ Roll
3. Kaiser’s Crown
4. Southbound Bus
5. The Ditch
6. Worse Things Have Happened
7. Five Year Stretch
8. Drift Away
9. This Is How We Roll
10. Back In The Same Place Again
11. Head To Toe
12. Call The Boatman
Lineup:
Damien Coughlan – Vocals
JJ Fer – Guitar
Damon Maddison – Bass
Niall Cleary – Drums
Record Label: Profane Records
     


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Edited 24 September 2020
 

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