How has Timmy Lampinen escaped being a household name in households that love all types of grimy rock n roll? He’s been killing it since the 90’s with bands such as the Clone Defects, the prog leaning Human Eye and this band, which merges psyche, hard rock and proto-punk into one ripping sound.
Seriously, people who heard this band’s last album, Raw Sewage Roq, know the man is capable of writing some killer and primal rock n roll jams. On this new album, they continue to kick out the jams, and hopefully being on Third Man, will get the album in front of more people. Dude absolutely deserves it, because this record slays, from the songwriting, right down to the production, which is punchy and gritty, but still allows all the instruments to be heard, and the solos to jump out of the mix like cobras.
Opener “Get Up, Get Out” is call to arms with its ringing chords and incessant rhythm. The title track splits the difference between proto-punk and 70’s hard rock, also features some ripping guitar solo work from Lampinen. “Please Don’t Be Going” is a heartfelt, sincerely heartbreaking psychedelic-blues ballad. “Mental Boy” and “Weather Woman” are hard as nails glam stomps, bolstered by some fuzzed out riffs. “Back In The Dungeon” is a mid-paced burner that lays down Lampinen’s philosophy of finding salvation in grimy rock n roll.
Honestly, if you claim to like any type of garage punk, proto-punk or even proto-metal, you’re going to want to own this album. Heartless Heathen is easily one of the best rock n roll albums of the year. Don’t sleep on it. (Thomas Pizzola)