Bad Habit and the Corruptions
At the risk of redundancy: this debut album from Bad Habit and the Corruptions is a total asskick gut-punch old-school punk rock ripper. In the realm of local dirt-budget productions, this is my new all-around favorite since the Flash Boys‘ Dyin’ for Somethin To Live For. These guys have come up with some great songs. They’re not humdrum slobs on their instruments: we get some tasty, paint-scraping guitars from Ed Wille and Frankie Fixxer, and never a glitch in the beat. The production is solid: good DIY work by the band’s drummer Miguel Enriquez. But the thing that makes it stand out is a genuine aggression loosely reigned in by experience and undefeated humor, like a big lug who could beat up everyone he’s yelling about if he wasn’t so far gone, keeled over laughing at life’s tragic absurdity. This record is the Vic DiBitetto of punk rock. Coincidentally, it’s pretty stunk up with northern flavor: Jerry and Ed are from Chicago, and Frankie is from New Jersey – and rumor says this rock music racket might just be part of his Witness Protection Program cover.
Clearly insane vocalist Jerry Morgan can be blamed for the personality leaking out every crack in this ship. His inventive phrasing, slightly skewed steering, and agonizing inflections stir up a disturbing charm. No doubt the bad habits flaunted in the lyrics are his.
These 13 tracks go 13 rounds, with enough variety to keep the ADHD hamster on the wheel without the band’s character going off the rails. The record really doesn’t have any skip-over spots, but there’s a different top hit for everyone’s taste. “Losers Pit” has been on my auto-replay for a month now. It’s the new soundtrack to my asskick routine, the sonic caffeine that jump starts my kickassitude, the audiobooze that fuels my evening asskick. Jerry shoves off with a grunt-puke so pure and honest it purges any bullshit I might have swallowed since the last time I played it. From there on out it’s relentless, with a knuckle-dragging anchor riff, crafty song structure, and a bro-down sing-along chorus. The jangly guitar riff on “Beer Tickets” under-plowed by Jerry’s butt shaking bass lines is annoyingly infectious; annoying like a good itch-scratch that ends before the itch is completely scratched out.
I can have this cake and eat it too. Eat it till I’m stuffed and not get sick, and still there it is, saying eat me. It’s a groovy, dirty, beer-soaked back-alley rockathlon that might be sprinkled with a term like “surfy garage rock” if that didn’t evoke a lightweight image that is just crushed by the badassery of the Bad Habit.
– Bek Sabbath