The Milkshakes

Thee Knights of Trashe

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Three years on from the band's full-length debut, the Milkshakes did just what they were supposed to do on Thee Knights of Trashe -- namely, what they had been doing all along. The garage remained a primary source of inspiration, immediacy the name of the game, and worries about being overly derivative set aside without a care. Billy Childish and Mickey Hampshire once again made for a great tag team up front on guitar and vocals, and any longtime Childish watcher won't be in the least surprised by the offerings on display here. There's the usual slew of great song titles: "I Dreamt Last Night (That I Lay Dead)," "I'll Use Evil," and "Can't Seem to Love That Girl." There's the overt and proud of it quoting and referencing of any number of early rock & roll maniacs, American and English both -- even the early Beatles, likely just about the only period of that band's existence which Childish would care to stand. Regardless, there's definitely something of the smoke of Hamburg and the Cavern Café on tracks like "What You've Got," not to mention the rave-up breaks. The Kinks, the Rolling Stones, just about any early-'60s band worth their salt for actually getting a crowd going all get the nod one way or another, while at the same time making clear that the wistful likes of, say, "Ferry Across the Mersey" weren't high on the agenda. Bassist John Agnew makes enough straightforward noise alongside drummer Bruce Brand to keep the side up, while the production here, if a touch more "authentic" than earlier efforts, doesn't hide the sheer live-wire fun throughout. All anyone really needs is Childish's straightforward, unique voice taking charge on "I'm out of Control" to know that a good time is afoot.

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