Old Scratch, The Debut LP by Trophy Wives

Can you believe that this is the debut full length release from Louisville, Kentucky’s Trophy Wives? These boys have been rocking the the pants off anyone within earshot for years, touring relentlessly with their extremely large and loud amps.

Just released on vinyl ($12), limited run cd-digipak ($10), and digital download, Old Scratch is ready for you. Are you ready for it? Check out this write up by the folks at Latest Flame Records, who say way better than I could.

Old Scratch, the debut full-length from Louisville, Kentucky’s Trophy Wives, draws heavily from its place of origin along the banks of the Ohio River, a locale with a rich musical history that includes indie stalwarts Rodan, Slint, and Bonnie “Prince” Billy. Like the city’s favorite son, Muhammad Ali, the band knows its punches from its poetry, and both are on ample display here.

Playing on the loud-soft dynamics of its forebears but never slipping into the trappings of genre, the band lays a thick and heavy groundwork throughout. Bassist Tony Ash and drummer Geoff Paton provide a raw, edgy backbeat (“Bad Tattoos,” “Taste of Your Medicine”) to Billy Bisig and Elliott Turton’s carefully controlled guitar flights, which give every song a different personality but keep it all in the family.

Bisig’s pop sensibilities shine through in his vocals. His grungy delivery is balanced by melodies and harmonies that wouldn’t be out of step on a Kinks record (“Crooked Cross,” “616”). His lyrics are brooding and escapist, and gain from clever wordplay mixed throughout, as on the syrupy chorus of the otherwise riff-heavy “(You’re Like a) Bad Song.” For the most part though, Bisig’s takes on love, sex, loss and alienation in our connected world are refreshingly earnest.

Ultimately, Old Scratch is the document of a band with surprising range. From the assaulting screams of “Bless You All,” to the slinky bass and guitar lines that introduce “Picture Perfect,” to the silky vocal intro of “616,” Old Scratch introduces a band that you’d regret to overlook. Take the punch and you’ll hear the poetry.

Go to Latest Flame Records to order yourself a copy!

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