Chicago’s revered post-punk/psych band release their new album Chooch through their imprint Highwheel Records.
The band has been at the forefront of Chicago’s thriving DIY punk scene for over 15 years, and Chooch, recorded at Steve Albini’s Electrical Audio studio, is the fifth full-length
album in the bands’ storied catalog.
After essentially disappearing following the release of To Him That Wills The Way in 2014, the band finally re-emerged in February with the announcement of Chooch, along with sharing its blistering lead single “Fat Cat”, a perfect first taste of what the new album has in store. This
is a band that only comes out of the woodwork every five years or so when they have
something to say, and this album is no exception.
Together since 2004, Walking Bicycles are a blend of enigmatic doom pop and declarative lyrics that sound cool without trying to be, the type of music that exists for the sake of expression and enjoyment, drawing apt comparisons to artists like Siouxsie and the Banshees, Clinic, and the bleak psychedelia of early Jane's Addiction. By definition, a ‘chooch’ is a slang term for a
stupid person… on their new album, Walking Bicycles use a series of vignettes to
highlight the various chooches of the world: the jackasses, the idiots, and every
person in between who continues to act inappropriately.
Whereas To Him That Wills The Way was more narrative-driven, Chooch is a record that confronts familiar annoyances with the most freeing, middle finger-up act of defiance.
Guided by warped guitar tones, menacing drums, and thundering bass, the new
sound they present here is louder than anything they’ve recorded before. Consider
it a blend of manic attitude and the burst of freedom that comes from telling the
worst people in the world that they can go to hell.
Walking Bicycles is a band who doesn’t follow the traditional album cycle, like so many others… they always have and always will do everything on their own terms, regardless of external
pressures or what tempting offers might be on the table, as they often are. Sometimes
“other" circumstances get in the way, such as guitarist Julius Moriarty’s three-year
prison stint for possessing a large quantity of weed (he was a Humboldt farmer,
That story was the catalyst for the bands’ most recent album To Him That Wills The Way, which recounted both his experience being incarcerated and the subsequent separation from his
partner, the bands’ fierce vocalist Jocelyn Summers. Now more than ever, it’s clear that
the recognition that Walking Bicycles get in the DIY community comes from 15 years of
hard work, dedication, and a refusal to settle for anything less than what feels right.
B I Z Z A R R E
Walking Bicycles - Chooch