LustSickPuppy treads on us with their platform boots on CAROUSEL FROM HELL, a highly detailed, dynamic mash-up of speed and sonic finesse.

Release date: April 26, 2024 | Independent | Instagram | Twitter | Bandcamp

Man, I’m just here to have fun. I love shit that just sounds great. I revel in the subjectivity of it all, and I love shit that goes completely against my own life and aesthetic. You likely wouldn’t guess I’d like LustSickPuppy, but on the cuntrary, I’ve actually been hip to them for a while now after a pal showed me their music, then I found a recorded performance hosted by hate5six, and I’ve been awaiting an LP ever since.

The Brooklyn, NY artist is enigmatic as fuck – genrefying them is purposefully difficult as they play with punk, hip-hop, and tons of electronic-based subgenres like breakbeat, digital hardcore, techno, hyperpop, drum and bass, and tons more. Usually seen wearing off-putting yellow and black smiley facepaint, black-out contacts, and ultra-alt (altra?) garb, LustSickPuppy embodies a hell of a lot in their presentation and art much like one of their influences Missy Elliott, so much that CAROUSEL FROM HELL is just the beginning.

Perhaps the biggest thing their music does is use the audience as a canvas. I literally do not know how you listen to something this energetic and don’t wanna move. It’s catchy with its abrasion, like a beat made from the sounds of knives sharpening. “OFF THIS” is rife with buzzy and throbbing bass, their vocals oscillate from a hushed timbre to a speedy rap on the hook which is profoundly infectious, a trend you’ll notice as you go through each track on CAROUSEL FROM HELL.  This is by far the calmest song on the album (except maybe “EVICTION”), a chilled intro representing the slow incline of a roller coaster before dropping you off the top of the tracks into a dark tunnel.

“EMPATHY RESERVED” has a lot more going on with it. It’s noisy and textured so well, utilizing a strong drum and bass foundation, yet has a sweet, melodically sung chorus between all the glitchy, screamed vocals that accent the track. I love the lyrical metering of the second verse which reminds me of the hook from Denzel Curry and PlayThatBoiZay‘s much more collected yet similarly busy “P.A.T.“. “KETCHUP MUSTARD” is one of my faves with the fuzzy, rattling rhythm that comes through really well with decent headphones. LustSickPuppy‘s vocals are the star though as they rapid-fire verse after verse of confident, domineering power with snappy lines like ‘Cute little bitch with a bite like venom/Pretty little kitty and it’s tight like denim‘ and ‘Yes I said it and yes I did it/I hit it then it’s fuck your feelings‘.

The bass behind “EXES” is egregiously hard – if I had a real system in my apartment, that shit would shift the fucking building foundation. The beat and vocals warp and bend around themselves as LustSickPuppy exercises a little sexual agency and get theirs while giving a negative amount of fucks. “LOTHARIO” is fittingly named with Mx. Puppy lashing out at someone who did them wrong. It’s the most vocally intense song with them belting out certain words for emphasis over crashing drums and humming synths that sound like ghostly moans. “BLISSTER” has similar energy and delivery, but a much more varied progression with LustSickPuppy really mixing things up vocally to great effect, from metal-esque yell-growls to another cleanly sung hook. This track has both the angel and devil on its shoulders and I love it for that.

This is a labor of love from the singular mind of LustSickPuppy who wants you to know they’re not just nice on the mic, but behind the boards (or laptop) as well (‘They wanna see a white boy behind the beat/Couldn’t believe that the Puppy in the seat‘). It’s like if The Money Store was neighbors with a cyberpunk queer club and they jointly hosted a block party. Finding artists like Rico Nasty years ago has prepared me to eagerly and completely ingest anything similar and LustSickPuppy is the logical progression for something like her sugar trap sound as well. Anyone enjoying the merging of metal, hardcore, and more synthetic elements could eat this up too.

CAROUSEL FROM HELL is a near-19-minute circus of dark vibes and fun carried hard by eclectic production and a charismatic vocalist you can’t help but wanna imitate as they intimidate. In other words, I wanna be like LustSickPuppy when I grow up, but I’ll settle for more of their music when the time comes. These songs haven’t left my head since they dropped and I wouldn’t have it any other way. This album should be setting your summer on fucking fire.

Artist photo by Johan Bonilla

David Rodriguez

David Rodriguez

"I came up and so could you, and fuck the boys in blue" - RMR

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