The Surreal McCoys make a lot of noise and know how to have fun. The dozen tracks on their latest album can be found at the corner of hard rock and outlaw country, a place where Johnny Cash is still the king and still drinks with the Brits. How else could one come up with a mashup of Cash and Led Zep (“Whole Lotta Folsom”) without sounding cheesy or corny. The songs reek of revenge and cries for help, sex, paranoia, liquor, crime and decadence in a way that adds a dangerous edge to the music.
“Love me and be true or else.” These lyrics are sung to a motorific sound of pounding drums and snaky guitar riffs, heavy bass and raw rhythm guitar. Think the ‘Mats in their metal phase or classic cow-punk, and you’ve got the idea. The Surreal McCoys convey a sense of urgency, as if life choices matter — even when you have little choice in the matter. Ironic, maybe, but prophetic as well. You may start out howlin’ at ‘em, yet understand that the only possible response is a growl.