New Wet Kojak – Do Things

New Wet Kojak
Do Things

New Wet Kojak are just what I want every band to be: different. This band was formed by two members of Girls Against Boys and members of Edsel and Gray Matter. With some time to kill and some inspiration fluttering just outside the bounds of traditional rock-n-roll, NWK have crafted their third full-length album, and it’s something special. More importantly, it’s different.
NWK play an odd mix of sounds that can be a mix between the sax-laden bass-heavy rock of Morphine, the grooving rock of Afghan Whigs, the drum and synth effects of Soul Coughing, and some lounge rock thrown in for good measure. These songs are very full, with booming bass and drums, catchy but secondary guitars, sax, synth effects and these great, loungy, grooving vocals that are just a bit sleazy. This is the kind of music that should be played in a dark, smoky bar, with lots of mysterious people hanging around, and just the right amount of gin flowing through your system.
“Go4theoverkill” kicks things off, starting off low-end, with plenty of bass and a stuttering flurry of guitars, saxophone, and clattering drums. The vocals don’t so much sing as glide across the music, as singer Scott McCloud croons, “These are the rules of the game: Go for the overkill.” The title track has a steady drum-beat and a swarm of synthesized strings. It’s the kind of song you want to slink and sway to. “Punxnotdead” has a Soul Coughing drum-beat and groove going on, but the bells and sax slow things down enough, making it sleepy and moody. Sax leads the way in the muzzled “Love Career,” which picks things up a bit with heavy drums and bass. The heavy groove-rock of “Sticky 2 Me” reminds me of the most recent Afghan Whigs music, the sax and bass being vital to the song. The sheer intensity of the sound on “Bad Blood” will throw you for a loop after getting just comfortable enough with the groove. But don’t worry, because “Auto-E” (“You’re auto-erotic, baby.”) slows things down considerably, the vocals here clearer than anywhere and the sax just oh-so-sweet. And “I Wanna See What’s Up With When You Move” is the most Morphine-esque, all dark and soulful, heavy and somber and sultry, as McCloud almost whispers, “Kick ass! Rock and roll.” And “Show Business” finishes things off as the most unusual, disjointed song that still keeps flow and that soulful croon.
New Wet Kojak are sly about their music. McCloud has no problem with crooning odd and disjointed lyrics at you as if he’s trying to lure you into bed, and the band has no problem with supplying the cacophony of sounds to blend all together and provide just the right mood to get you to do it. Sax, heavy bass, plenty of synths, and that loungy croon are enough to make you toss out your rock records, dim the lights, smoke a stoagie and just smile.