BLACK JOE LEWIS “Electric Slave”

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Lewis takes third disc Electric Slave back to the garage-punk days of Black Joe Lewis & the Cold Breeze, opening with wildly distorted howler “Skulldiggin,” the album’s lead single. Its lyrics register undecipherable, like Lewis fed them through a summer thunderstorm. Second track “Young Girls” boogies down the same double-time path as Tell ‘Em highlight “Sugarfoot” and Scandalous counterpart “Mustang Ranch,” though there and elsewhere (“Guilty,” “Golem,” “Mammas Queen”), there’s a winning recklessness to Lewis’ style that rarely infused earlier work. What was once tight arrangements flowing through sections and pieces (2009’s “I’m Broke,” 2011’s “She’s So Scandalous”), here becomes a vehicle for Lewis and troupe to go nuts. Only the radio ready “Come to My Party,” with its disco funk bassline and bleeding horns, maintains any deep semblance to the Honeybears’ tighter, Meters-inflected funk. The rest evokes true grime: the Stooges scooping “My Blood Ain’t Runnin’ Right,” the grungy, low-end rise and fall of “Dar es Salaam,” and juke joint blues slinking around “Vampire.” Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.