The Scene Creamers

I Suck on That Emotion

Since fronting one of the most influential punk bands of the ‘90s, former Nation of Ulysses front man Ian Svenonious has swaggered in entertaining new directions with infectious neo-garage groups like the Make-Up, Weird War and Cupid Car Club. Mixing Prince-esque carnal cries with frenetic punk delivery, Svenonious took his Marxist, D.C. punk leanings and added gospel, soul and, more recently, psychedelic muses as he careened through different fashionable bands accompanied by steady bassist Michelle Mae (whose funk chops are consistently improving).

Their latest effort is the Scene Creamers trio, which adds Golden Smog guitarist Alex Minoff into the mix for a noodling though solid People Party sound—as if Funkadelic joined Love in punk Britain. The Creamers’ colorful debut also marks the first time that Svenonious has sung on any acoustic guitar-driven tracks. We get the early Ray Davies-esque blues of “Luxembourg,” the catchy swing of “Hey Lonnie” (which sounds like a ‘60s pop hit), and Minoff does particularly well on the spooky, echoed scales of “What About Me?”

As usual, Svenonious finds cool ways of blending chic posturing and sweaty, balls-out music ("Here Comes the Judge part II") that is always better live than on record. But while the album may not contain the definitive performances, at least you get to hear lyrics like these from “Elfin Orphan": “I was working for the CIA (and I didn’t even know it) … I was working for the FCC (and I didn’t even know it) … I was working for Lou Reed (repeat refrain).”

This new one is a must for fans: great production, solid bass and drums—and the inimitable Ian lisp in overdrive; party music to enjoy self-conscious hipster rebellion by.