Sweaty Palms – ‘Love Me / Pretty Poor’ [Black Sheep]

Glasgow’s Sweaty Palms drop ‘Love Me / Pretty Poor’ on Black Sheep Records, and run-of-the-mill garage rock this ain’t.

The punchy verse on ‘Love Me’ blends the staccato guitar of Iggy’s ‘Passenger’ with the ghoulish camp of The Cramps; so far, so promising.

Then the chorus arrives like a mighty wave against the hull of our sonic ghost ship, all nauseous reverb and sneering disdain.

Vocalist Robbie Houston delivers the hook in an atonal drawl worthy of a precocious Nick Cave.

When Houston sings “love me”, he isn’t begging for your adoration – he’s goading you to smack him in the face.

It’s a drunken sing-along on the Styx river rowboat, and if Sweaty Palms are to be our companions in the afterlife, we certainly won’t be bored.

‘Pretty Poor’ provides a nice contrast for the listener – where ‘Love Me’ was tightly structured, this second track is loose and meandering.

It’s evocative stuff, nonetheless: in my mind’s eye, I can see skeletons high-kicking in some demonic cabaret.

All eyes should now be slapped squarely on Sweaty Palms in anticipation of their next move.

Just don’t look at them the wrong way – you might regret it.

Words: Graham Neil Gillespie

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