Bad Custer’s self-titled debut begins with the song “We Don’t Play Rock ’n’ Roll,” a curious title for a record of nine distorted-rock tracks. This statement is comically amplified in the final chorus, as Jesse Davis (guitar/vocals) and Phil Giammattei (bass/vocals) belt out the title of the track over an extravagant guitar solo.
But humor, especially the dark kind, is kind of Bad Custer’s thing. On “I’m Doing Good,” the lyrics are twisted, detached from reality and served over upbeat, jangly riffs: “You see Buddy Holly and he offers to buy you a flip phone / but it’s OK because Buddy Holly is dead.” This attitude returns on “Andrea,” the story of a woman whose life decays into alcohol-fueled tragedy, served in a bouncy tone with an early-Beck vibe.
Not every song is all laughs — “Bones Like Lightning” is a sinister, meandering jam that plays on the classic revenge trope.
Whether Bad Custer is being silly or ominous, either way it’s rock ‘n’ roll, and pretty good rock ’n’ roll at that.