Bitch: Don’t Let Me Die! is the eleventh studio album from Detroit’s Electric Six. They are fronted by the colourful and cartoonish Dick Valentine and probably best known for bombastic rock tracks Danger! High Voltage! and Gay Bar. Electric Six is a band that embraces cliché and wears it like a badge of honour.
Although the band hasn’t really entered collective consciousness since a hamster suggestively scuttled across our screens, Electric Six have been releasing a steady stream of albums. This is to say that since shocking the world with the cock rock gimmick in the early 2000s, Electric Six haven’t been able to replicate the joke.
Evident in Bitch! Don’t Let Me Die! are all the motifs from the cock-rock handbook: sexually boastful lyrics containing phallic imagery; loud, rhythmically insistent guitars, built around techniques of arousal and release. The lyrics are arrogant and misogynistic but the exact words are less important than the vocal style involved, the shrill shouting and screaming of Dick Valentine is equal parts impressive and trope.
Despite this, many of the tracks here are irritatingly likeable because occasionally the band does hit the mark and produce blistering guitar driven rock songs that sound actually cool. The album is blessed by guitarists Da Ve and Johnny Na$hinal – in particular the face melting guitar solo in When Cowboys File For Divorce.
And there are some good tracks too. Opening gambit Drone Strikes is the perfect album opener. Valentine, cocks an eyebrow and snarls through every syllable. The guitar riff sits repetitively and defiantly against the hammering thumping drums. It all makes sense here. The most infectious of the songs is the disco-esque and danceable Roulette which evokes memories of Danger! but sadly never really develops to be an Electric Six classic.
Clearly talented musicians and purposeful performers it’s a shame many of the tracks here are delivered like parodies instead of homages to obvious influences such as KISS and Black Sabbath.
Groups such as The Darkness and Tenacious D have realised the line is fine and joke is an old one.
A band to see live I think but not enough depth or variety to maintain my attention or interest in this collection of songs.