A pandemic-induced shutdown has seemingly only emboldened and sharpened Royal Honey, a Pittsburgh act that has been making tasty cocktails out of equal parts glam and punk for several years now, their months-and-months-long quarantine resulting in a rather succulent sophomore effort called Sweet Heat that evokes good times, boozy vibes, and smoky little venues.
Opener “Cut N Run” gets the dice rolling and the glitter flying with a spiked fruit punch that conjures UFO and Waysted and gets splashed all over your good white shirt after the singer starts a fight with some clown who flirted with his old lady. Speaking of which, the David Johansen-ish stylings of Robert Collins are appropriately barrel-aged in whiskey throughout this three-lock box’s seven wishes.
“The Tease” begins with a 80’s Judas Priest/Quiet Riot drumbeat and then rolls into a Rhino Bucket groove, the Tommy Bolin-like guitarwork of Dave Musick and Eric Rodger wrapping itself around a sizeable, platinum chorus.
From there we’re sildin’ down a hill with American Dog and Molly Hatchet in the form of “Bleedin’ And Dyin’,” a track that almost sounds as if were a collaboration between Tora Tora and The Georgia Satellites.
Before you know it, it’s 10 p.m., and the real hard partiers are comin’ in. That’s when things go “The Wrong Way,” a track that and chases Rose Tattoo down the rain-splattered streets with Cheap Trick and Krokus not far behind, that beer-battered, deep-fried, lardy Aerosmith refrain soaking up the alcohol so ya don’t get too buzzed.
And yeah, shit’s gettin’ deep.
Past the halfway point, we’re met with “Gimme Gimme,” a gloriously obnoxious, trashy firecracker that has more Stones than Mick and Keef do these days, especially when Eric and Dave get their Thin Lizzy on in the middle of the proceedings. The final two tracks set ya up just to knock ya over, “Liquid Dynamite” bangin’ like Airbourne as speedy, Lemmy-proud closer “Pull The Plug” steamrolls over your sorry behind for ever daring to make trouble in this establishment. Yer barred for life, pal. Sorry.
This carouser of a record passes out on your porch this Friday, July 2. Make sure you stay up late to catch it when it shows up. And be careful when it does. That’s a new suit, man. Ignore what the neighbors say too.
Also, be sure to catch Royal Honey live at their release party the same evening the album drops.