Let's Wrestle sees U.S. release of debut, 'In the Court of the Wrestling Let's'

It’s pretty clear on their full-length debut that members of Let’s Wrestle didn’t form a band to deliver grand philosophical messages about life. They did it to have fun.

Starting with the album title, “In the Court of the Wrestling Let’s” (Merge), the English trio nurtures a charming irreverent streak on garage-rock songs with titles like opener “My Arms Don’t Bend That Way, Damn It!” and “We are the Men You Will Grow to Love Soon.”

The latter barrels along at a brisk pace, overdriven guitar and a fleshy bassline mixing it up with busy drums as the band outlines its plan: “We’re going down to Job Centre, and soon we’ll come out with a job,” Wesley Patrick Gonzalez sings, all in pursuit of buying “some G-and-Ts for the girls.” How dashing.

That’s basically how it goes on all 16 tracks, apart from one or two like “My Eyes Are Bleeding (Interlude),” a minute-long snippet of ambient chatter, laughter and coughing in the studio.

On the other songs, the band plays as a practiced, slightly ramshackle unit, tight enough to keep the songs from going off the rails and loose enough that they never sound overly premeditated. There are periodic noisy eruptions in “I’m in Love With Destruction,” a careening guitar riff reels through the snotty “Song for Old People” and an almost dazed air would contradict the title of “I’m in Fighting Mode” if not for a pair of savage guitar breaks.

Amid all the lurching arrangements and insolent lyrics lurks a band with a genuine love of rock ’n’ roll, which makes “In the Court of the Wrestling Let’s” a fun and funny album that goes a little deeper than the band would likely let on.

We Are the Men You Will Grow to Love Soon mp3

— Text by Eric R. Danton, photo by Pat Graham

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