sam lock-ward - "where the sick go to die / nonstop rawk & rawl jukebox vol.17"

the ever prolific sam locke-ward brings you another treat. this time grasping the reigns for the majority of recording and instrument duties. nonstop indeed, as it builds and builds, pop songs upon rawk songs, humming harder and harder in your head, your heart beating faster and faster till them aortas break the seams and all your sewage blows forth from your manholes. in a good way.

"do it wrong"
"man me"
"lippy (i dont want to be)
"18 candles"
"no mean you get tossed around the room"
"the worst"
"buyers remorse at the gates of hell"
"bad intentions"
"royal arms"
"making lemonade"
"missed me"
"may i lead you astray"
"the stupid king"
"greener gaze"
"the hammer falls"
"a bold new vision"
"pomp + unfortunate living"


The prolific and downright unrelenting Samuel Locke-Ward comes at us again with the follow up to a record that hasn’t even come out yet (due to difficulties at the pressing factory). Where the Sick Go to Die: Nonstop Rawk + Rawl Jukebox Vol. 17 is 18 tracks and 46 minutes of the lo-est-fi trash you’ve ever heard, and that’s meant as a compliment.
The album opener, “Do It Wrong” and “Lippy (I Don’t Want to Be)” are certified slacker anthems. “Do It Wrong” is sloppy and shambling, as though the guitars are about slip out of tune or break at any moment, and Sam bursts a blood vessel or two belting out the song’s title. The only thing holding the whole exuberant middle finger of a song together is his wife, Grace’s meticulous drumming. “Lippy” is less chaotic musically, but a more pointed piece of snark: “I don’t wanna be lippy / just do as I’m told / yes sir, yes sir, I know.” The tune stomps along to a simple marching beat with thin, tiny synthesizer line meekly winding itself up and down the scale. Where the Sick Go to Die is easily one of Locke-Ward’s most consistent releases, it certainly features one of the most miraculous stretches of songs he’s ever strung together. From the dizzy, glitchy, bizarrely positive “Making Lemonade” through the nearly bucolic “Greener Gaze,” Locke-Ward packs more sarcasm and animated frenzy into five songs than most could cram into a career. This immaculate run includes the early rock waltz of “May I Lead You Astray.” Sam’s whispered delivery sounds incredibly creepy, yet the slimy slide guitar and the choral-themed prom sound of the instrumentation bring a saccharine sort of sweetness to the song. That sort of juxtaposition is one of Locke-Ward’s greatest tools; it’s what makes him seem so eminently listenable and so infuriatingly alienating. He’s perfected it for Where the Sick Go to Die: Nonstop Rawk + Rawl Jukebox Vol. 17. - little village