Far from their home in Satellite Beach, FL, Chris Hess and Adam Winn are amidst a residency in New York City with their band, Bastard Lovechild of Rock and Roll. With them, and the reason their playing, is the astonishingly brilliant EP Bim Bom, their official debut to the world. At nine songs deep, Bim Bom stretches the traditional idea of an EP, the band, stretching any perceived notions of what of two people can do in music.
As long time surfing buddies, Hess and Win grew up together in Jacksonville, FL and “hung out all the time.” Life saw them move apart to purse individual careers in rock, but they always kept in touch. The two got back together when Hess needed last minute help after his drummer bailed on him. Hess and his former drummer (remains unnamed) were booked for a Saturday night gig. The week before, that drummer called and said he couldn’t play the gig. Panicked, Hess reached out to his long time buddy to help him out of this jam, “I asked if he (Winn) could learn all the songs within a week and play a show with me, and he did, and it was amazing,” Hess says. “We’ve been together ever since”.
What has since resulted from that first show is rock ‘n’ roll magic. Now going by the ridiculous self appointed monikers Cookie SugarHips (Hess) and Hot Damn Sweet Huckleberry Winn (Winn), they have figured out a way to cram every corner of rock into their sound. Influences from Zeppelin to T. Rex and relative new comers The Black Angels are thrown into a dirty rock stew that holds nothing back. On the EP, it’s all tied together by Bossanova interludes that piece together a story of forbidden love. Ambitious much?
As for those nicknames, neither recall where they came from exactly. Winn’s had his for some time now, something his friends call him” because it was kind of catchy.” Hess wanted something that sounded like a Golden Girl, hence Cookie. The SugarHips are because he likes to dance. It’s all a part of the show, the mystery they are looking to create. It all comes back to the music though because flamboyance is nothing with out the chops to back it up.
“Boy You Need Jesus” is a loud bluesy burner. Slide steel guitars show off the classic seventies rock roots as Hess’s voice takes on the body of a young Robert Plant. From there they take a stab at dance rock with “Hallelujah I’m BLORR’n Again” and “My Terrific Tush”, and hit everything heavy and psychedelic in between. Hess and Winn both agree, simply put, it’s “booty shak’n rock n roll,” and, in the end, they just want you to dance. But what about those Boss Enova interludes?
“I like listening to different types of music, and mostly music that will take me to a different place in my head,” Hess explains. “I love Bossanova and Spanish music and jazz, things like that. Anything that will take me to somewhere else and make your imagination run wild”. Going from 11 to three on the volume dial certainly provides the right setting for the mind to drift, as do the references to Frederic Garcia Lorca, Hess’ favorite author.
Hess and Winn both have wild imaginations. That comes with the territory though because not every band can start with a concept album. That concept, set in Victorian-era Spain, is of a forbidden love between a Spanish matron, Delisa, and her secret lover, SugarHips, who’s not Spanish. When Delisa’s daddy finds out, he’s not too happy, and the plot thickens when our lovers get pregnant. Hess interjects: “Her father, being Spanish, did not like that I was not of Spanish blood and denounced the child making it a bastard.”
The idea behind this record is mostly Hess’, the lyricist of the two, but when it came to creating the whole package, both are equally responsible. They’re a hungry team with more ideas than they can handle. Coupled with energetic live shows that see them, going as Winn puts it, “as ape-shit as we can”, BLORR has what it takes to be a band to watch for next year. Frankly, Bim Bom kills, and tops the list of albums missed in 2010 because we were too busy with Arcade Fire. When asked about their plans for an LP, they both agree they’ll “probably end up going pretty big on it.” When that happens…be ready.
For now, you can listen, and download, their debut EP for free from their SoundCloud page.