Album Review: Nashville Pussy - "Up The Dosage"

Do you like dirty, filthy, skanky rock and roll? Do you like it with a taste of Southern rock marinated in sex, drugs, drinking and debauchery? Then I think you're going to like "Up The Dosage", the latest album from Grammy nominated rockers Nashville Pussy.

You read right. Nashville Pussy received a Grammy nomination back in '99 for Best Metal Performance for their song "Fried Chicken and Coffee". Nashville Pussy is not what you would call a "mainstream" metal band but they do have a substantial underground following. The guitars are loud and sloppy, the vocals are gravely and fierce, the bass pounds into your skull like the cam on a '69 Camaro and the drums just keep on kickin'.

Nashville Pussy sounds like an amalgamation of Mountain, AC/DC, Ted Nugent and Motorhead. At times, I was reminded of Scissorfight. The backbone of Nashville Pussy are husband and wife team Blaine Cartwright and Ruyer Suys (pronounced "Rider Sighs") and they're joined on this record by drummer Jeremy Thompson and Bonnie Buitrago on bass.

There's nothing fancy about "Up The Dosage" but the production is solid. Nashville Pussy makes music like they don't know how to do anything else. This is their job. Making music is what they do for a living. Sure, they may not be making Miley Cyrus money but they sound like they REALLY love their job. Blaine Cartwright explains, “It was clear from the beginning that the album would have to be cut with very little money because the ZZ Top tour cost us lots of dollars”.

These folks are true Southern rockers (hailing from Atlanta, Ga., not Nashville) and they do not take themselves too seriously.

The rhythms and the beats are simple. The lyrics are also simple but fun. They seem to be written by a band that rocks hard and party's even harder. If you like using drugs (and Nashville Pussy sure sounds like they do) then you'll love songs like "Till the Meat falls off the bone" (get high, get stoned, smoke, smoke till the meat falls off the bone), "Till The Drugs Wear Off", "Hooray for Cocaine, Hooray for Tennessee", "Up the Dosage" and "Pillbilly Blues".

As you can see, humor abounds on this album. In addition to the previously mentioned tracks you'll also find humor in song titles like "The South's Too Fat To Rise Again" and "White and Loud". And it's not just the titles. "Rub It To Death" has some funny, yet poignant lyrics, "...forget the honey, you catch more flies with money and you won't see no flies around me". A stroke of brilliance there if you ask me.

"Taking it Easy" is voiced by Ruyer Suys and is a minute long tribute to punk. Simple, unapologetic rock. "White and loud" has a bit of a Sabbath feel to it and eschews the use of earplugs or any suggestion that the volume be turned down for any reason.

And just when you think you've heard everything, along comes "Hooray for Cocaine, Hooray for Tennessee", a folk/country number that replaces the screaming guitar with a mandolin!? This could be Tennessee's new state song?

Seriously, it's a fun album. It's a yee-haw, keg party soundtrack. The guitar sound rocks, Suys kicks ass on her instrument and having female backing vocals on a Southern rock influenced album lends a bit of Lynard Skynard feel to the mix. The simplicity of a song like "Till The Drugs Wear Off" makes it no less enjoyable.

Dirty, filthy, wonderful rock and roll - that's what "Up the Dosage" is all about. Get up, get down and party till your pants fall down. That's the message here. Whether this is your lifestyle and you need conformation that you're not the only person who lives this way or you just feel like living vicariously through our Nashville Pussy friends, you'll have a great time. Or, at least you'll think you did. You may not remember all of it. Trust me, you had a great time.

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