Ricky Hell and the Voidboys


Ricky Hell and the Voidboys L’Appel du Vide LP

The name might make you think this is some cheeky throwback act, but RICKY HELL AND THE VOIDBOYS is delightfully weird, smothering melodic pop in piles of scuzz and skronk. Tracks like “Strychnine” shine by marrying shoegaze-adjacent tones (think Methodrone-era BRIAN JONESTOWN MASSACRE) with hyperactive synth cross chatter. What really makes me stand to attention here, though, is the restraint. RICKY’s voice barely comes up past a whisper, a calm center to a storm of psychedelic layers of sound that manage to stay cohesive throughout. Each track is heartfelt and often gorgeous, but never without being daringly its own beast. Try out “Alaska,” replete with clarinet and glockenspiel, and hear what fuzzy guitar pop music should always sound like.

Ricky Hell and the Voidboys Ricky Hell & the Voidboys LP

Drug-induced garage and/or bedroom rock brilliance from Ohio’s VOIDBOYS, fronted alternately by Ricky Hell and/or Ricky Hamilton (who are most assuredly not the same people…unless they are). Why is the lead instrument in “I Luv It” a clarinet? This is just one of the (many) questions that you will have after listening to this banger—but mostly you’ll be asking “where can I get more?” Several of these tracks are from the Killed By Ricky tape that most of us will never own, an indescribable collision of dream pop and infectious two-chord punk and a laser-sharp focus on a good hook. CHROME meets ROKY ERICKSON meets the SPITS. There, I said it.