At long last, you can be a winner at the game of life by checking out these two righteous new EPs in the latest roundup of Vegas releases:
THE BITTERS/FAT DUKES, “High ’n’ Live”: This live EP from two of Vegas’ most singular acts is just like being at the Double Down where it was recorded — except the sound is better, you don’t have to dodge any Charmin from the Dukes’ stage props and no one is passed out on the toilet.
First, there’s instrumental trio The Bitters, who can Shop-Vac enough technique into a two-minute jam to fill a song five times that length.
Guitarist Jeff Murphy is a slippery player, reminiscent at times of the way Primus six-stringer Larry Lalonde warps notes and wrings fresh sounds out of familiar patterns. Drummer Frank Klepacki, who expertly recorded the disc, is a chameleon behind the kit, altering his approach depending on the setting, while bassist Vinny Moncada treats his fretboard like a drag strip, racing up and down the thing.
They throw down hardest here on “Vinny Vs. His Garage Door,” a funk meteorite with a dense, metallic core.
Next, we have the Fat Dukes, a band suggestive of what it might sound like if Black Sabbath and Frank Zappa went skinny-dipping in a reservoir of malt liquor and bad ideas. On “Threesome,” the band answers the burning question: What if the Butthole Surfers channeled Teddy Pendergrass in pursuit of a window-steaming bedroom jam about the joys of sharing your woman with another dude?
From there comes the bizzaro thrash surge of “Grandma Mormon,” a tale of a demonic penis, and the Murphy-abetted bedlam of “Bafomitorium.”
The only thing missing is the toilet-paper gun and the drunken dudes playing air guitar.
GOLDBOOT, “The Electric Eccentric”: It’s the single most irrepressible song to come from Vegas this year, some hot-blooded disco that elevates body temperatures like a blood transfusion with Tabasco sauce in place of plasma.
With its thunderbolt horns, falsetto come-ons and oscillating synth lines, “Cold Feet” anchors the latest EP from this blue-eyed electro soul trio.
“Will you take me there?” singer Logan Lanning asks on the track in question. The destination he has in mind?
All corners of the dance floor, which this trio commandeers via the chiming, saxophone-abetted “The Beaten Path,” the radio-ready, Prince-worthy funk of “Timing is Everything” and ecstatic album opener “Undertaker.”
“GoldBoot is a groove,” the band writes on its Facebook page, and like a good groove, this one bears repeating.
Contact reporter Jason Bracelin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0476.