Jonny Shitbag and The Smokes release their first (and quite possibly last) album, beautifully titled, ‘You Could Not Have Given the Slightest of Fucks’. Go on, take a second to appreciate that name. All done? Then we’ll begin…
The tale of Jonny and his motley crew is one that deserves to be immortalised in the pages of history books, regularly quoted as one of the great tragedies of our time.
In the words of his band, The Smokes, Jonny was their ‘talisman’. Yet, not long after the album was written, he disappeared without a trace.
In the months that followed, members of The Smokes (Curls, Traff and TJ) got to setting their absent amigo’s dream in concrete. They worked off a limited number of demo recordings, and a selection of scribbled lyrics and chords that auspiciously arrived one day through Curls’ letterbox. Their only identifiable feature, an Asian postmark.
The album gives us an insight into the mysterious Jonny’s mind. Songs fight and flit between raging punk, fun-loving pop and foot-stomping alt-rock, revealing the intrinsic conflict within. Yet, irregardless of the profanity ridden naming, throughout the album there is an underlying sense of innocent fun. It all boils down to a group of friends, who spent time and made music together because they enjoyed it. As their song, ‘Jesus or George’, states,
“We used to watch TV, sitting side by side.”
It is this charming simplicity that makes their debut album such a success. Every word and feeling is genuine, and the overall result is an imminently listenable 12 track triumph. So, for their fans, and for music, I thank The Smokes for this little piece of magic, and urge Jonny to return to the studio sooner rather than later.
Catch up with Jonny Shitbag & The Smokes on their Twitter.