Unnatural Helpers: Cracked Love & Other Drugs

This make-shift muscle rock outfit from Seattle does a lot with very little.  At its core Unnatural Helpers is Dean Whitmore’s baby, but he added a few extra capable rockers to accent Cracked Love & Other Drugs.  Nothing pretentious, just raw rock on display that never lasts longer then two and a half minutes with most songs ending before the two minute mark is even sniffed. 

The yell/spoken vocals convey the simple point across to the listener; you ain’t going to find too many metaphors or hidden meanings in Whitmore’s tunes.  Not giving up booze and cigs (”Sunshine/Pretty Girls”) is addressed as is infidelity (“She Was Your Girlfriend”, “Wayward Eye”) and simple angst (“I Don’t Belong to You”). 

Perhaps most surprisingly, contained within their brevity, these songs never feel under developed in the slightest.   Fuzzed guitars, tempo changes and groovy surf rock all can occupy a single track and never clutter.  The punk ethos flowing through this album is palpable and the adjective that best describes Unnatural Helpers style on Cracked Love & Other Drugs is; urgent.  So next time you want to digest a full album in less then 25 minutes hook up this minimalist fist pumper.      

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