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69 DEMENTED - EAT MORE PUSSY.

Released October 2022 on Bad Billy Records Reviewed by Nick 'Rockin Doc' Kemp January 2023 Buy the album here: https://badbillyrecords.bigcartel.com/.../69demented-eat...

69Demented are: Mark 'Sparky' Phillips - Vocals Mars Van Den Berg - All Instruments

Ever since their appearance on Youtube some 13 years ago we have been aware of the collaboration between Mark ‘Sparky’ Phillips and Rotterdam-based Mars Van Den Berg, who also happens to be the head honcho of Rockabilly band 69 Beavershot: hence the name of this project 69 Demented. There were four tracks originally:’ Red Headed Woman’, ‘Personal Jesus, ‘Leave My kitten Alone,’ and ’Uncle John’. The band has added to this, a further eight songs, making this a full album and from my perspective it is a jolly good one.

When I spoke with Mark, he, in the typically self-deprecating way that is the norm for him, declared that ‘it’s just basic rockabilly.’ That may be true, but once that voice is added to the mix it becomes something else entirely. You know the line about someone reading the phonebook and managing to make it interesting well the same goes for Mark Phillips singing a song.

Track one ‘I’ll Be Glad When You’re Dead’ positively explodes from the speakers. This is a cover of a song also performed by Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong and Louis Prima. Written all the way back in 1931 by Sam Theard. Here, the song is rendered absolutely marvellous by Marks’ phrasing, ‘I’ll be glad when you are dead you rascal you, I‘ll be glad when you are dead you dirty dog.’ The song is straight-forward but it is rendered superb my Mark’s vocal performance which is stellar.

Personal Jesus is performed with an even more dark feel than the version by Depeche Mode. It is a wonderful cover version

‘Red Headed Woman’ is a stroller, but I daresay that it won’t be picked up by promoters of rockin’ clubs and I doubt that the blue rinse brigade who are steadily beginning to take their place amongst the strollers are likely to jump at this, but more fool them. It’s a great song. Mark signs off with an absolutely splendid ‘yeaaaah’.

‘Leave My Kitten Alone’ features a nice shuffle on the snare to which the guitar adds a nice riff. Mark’s vocals are impeccable throughout and there is some excellent 60s style backing vocals. The song was originally recorded by Little Willie john on the King label and was subsequently recorded by the Beatles amongst others.

Uncle John sees Mark doing his full Little Richard persona and I can conceive of few that could do it better.

‘Eat your Pussy’ hears Mark declare, ’I’m going to eat your pussy until the tears run down your legs’. It is the most garage song on the album and one that you ought not to play in the company of your parents.

‘Have Love Baby Will Travel ‘is a 60s garage track by titans of the genre, the Sonics. The song is handled masterfully by Mr. Phillips.

‘The Girl Can’t Dance; sees Mark exerting his voice fully, a Little Richard on the edge if you will, there is also a nice guitar solo. This is a cover of a song recorded in 1963 by Bunker Hill,

‘Lie To Me’ features a very high pitched riff throughout and I can’t ascertain what it’s played on, but it works well and the song is a good one, especially likeable are the starts and stops indeed the dynamics are handled very deftly.

‘H-Bomb Boogie’ has a spooky riff and a terrific vocal performance courtesy of the Spark, it’s a cracking song and in contention for my song of the album.

‘I’m Ready’ is essentially 12 bar blues, but with the help of a killer guitar riff this is converted into a great song that showcases Mark at his best.

‘Where the Wild Roses Grow’ sees Mark duetting with Mars’ wife Dee-Ann Van Den Berg. It is a country-esque ballad and features good vocal performances from both singers. There is some nice lap steel on this played by Kaar Van Bezooijen. The song was originally recorded by Nick Cave and Kylie Minogue as part of his Murder Ballads album. However, in truth this is a slightly disappointing way in which to conclude such an upbeat and hi-octane album.

Overall this is an absolute joy of an album from possibly the most innovative vocalist of the past forty years in the company of Mars, leader of 69 Beavershot. This may just be ‘basic rockabilly’ but in the hands of Mr Philips this is transmogrified into pure gold If you can get your hands on a copy and they are few and far between, you won’t be disappointed.



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