Patients Get Well Soon

It’s fitting that the Patients named their debut Get Well Soon, since certain band members offered their bodies up for medical testing in order to finance the disc. You can’t get much more rock’n’roll than that! Producer Pete Hudson (Deadly Snakes, Teen Crud Combo) consistently does justice to the lush instrumentation of the Patients — this definitely isn’t three-chord rock. With multi-layered complexity and a supporting cast of what sometimes seems like hundreds, the overall sound is grandiose to say the least. But Stu Bishop’s distinctively quavering sandpaper voice keeps us grounded in reality whenever things threaten to spiral into Phil Spector-esque flawlessness. "We’re Gorgeous” is a raucous, rootsy drinking song that could have benefited from some jug tooting and cowbell clanging to complete the backwoods barroom effect but its tongue-in-cheek conceit is thoroughly entertaining in and of itself. The lyrics on Get Well Soon are solid the whole way through, with smart-ass lines like, "I’m apologising/At least, that’s what I hear” making the album worthy of in-depth listening. This is probably what the Velvet Underground would have sounded like if they had allowed themselves to have a little bit more fun. Bless their souls. (Permafrost)