Album, Single and EP Reviews



  Good Bad, Not Evil by The Black Lips

Good Bad, Not Evil cover art

Artist: The Black Lips
Title: Good Bad, Not Evil
Catalogue Number: Vice Records
Review Format: CD
Release Year: 2007

The Black Lips have established themselves as a band notorious for ridiculous stage antics including fireworks, pissing or vomiting, provoking stage invasions by the audience and even band members making out with one another. But the gentlemen from Atlanta, Georgia prove with "Good Bad Not Evil" that they are very capable of transferring the ferocious energy of their live performances into the studio and have given us a punk rock album layered with surf guitar riffs, doo-wop style vocals and lyrics covering Native American affairs and religion, Hurricane Katrina and even the death of a band member.

The album starts off great laying down four of the album's best tracks straight off. Starting with "I Saw a Ghost" and followed by "O Katrina!", where a thunderous bass line collides with a frantic guitar telling the story of a relationship with a woman who could blow and fuck people over like no other. This shot is then chased with "Veni Vidi Vici" with plenty of pulsating vibraphones and a secular voice that predicts the inevitable Holy World War III. "It Feels Alright" rounds out this foursome and this upbeat number proves how strongly doo-wop and surf have influenced their music. When the Black Lips do this, it is as if they unite the vocal style of The Safari's with the fast, easy, punk of the Ramones.

The album closes as the Black Lips go for a softer tone with "Transcendental Light", written by guitarist Ian St. Pe, which is nearly a country song describing a time to die and the aftermath. As the album fades to silence, Ian slowly coaxes the listener with a haunting "follow me, follow me…" leading to the discovery of a hidden track. But I'll leave it up to you to discover this track and the thirteen others found on The Black Lips' "Good Bad, Not Evil", and you'll find yourself in possession of probably the best garage rock album since Kings of Leon's "Aha Shake Heartbreak".
Review Date: October 29 2008