Label: Bella Union
Released: 1st April 2022
Warmduscher’s fourth full-length offering, ‘At the Hotspot’ bellows forth with all the gusto and bravado of their debut album, but with an 80s sheen over its muddied soles.
An unnervingly eclectic dose of cynicism and joy in equal measure, the record’s sneering opening, addressing listeners as ‘piggies’, disorients just enough for the rest of the album to deliver like a fever dream – like Willy Wonka’s wild tunnelled boat ride, plunging forward into darkness, lit sporadically in neon colours by funky bass lines and slowly sermonising vocals.
From the caffeinated mania of ‘Eight Minute Machines’ to the disco shine of ‘Wild Flames’, lullaby sensibilities continually lurk amongst the chaos. With its bloated jazz feel and corduroy groove, there’s something intoxicating about the album, just like the allure of the promised ‘hotspot’, which glitters throughout. Like some lotus eater fantasy, this insinuates itself as a place of narcotics and narcolepsy, coaxing us forward in sharp and sweet tones.
Lead single, ‘Fatso’ asserts itself halfway through, prowling and proud, and finds itself in good company in an album where every song packs a different punch. A standout is the growling power of ‘Hot Shot’, the guitars sounding like the petrol slick revving of an engine that’s just raring to go. Throughout, the guitars provide the most impactful moments, alternately muscular and cavorting, fairy-like.
It’s an album that rides high on a mixture of adrenaline, paranoia, and ecstasy, screaming to be heard live – if only you could catch your breath.