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The King Khan & BBQ Show: Invisible Girl (Album Review)

Before he donned his gold lamé hot pants and played wild shows like the unholy offspring of Little Richard and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, King Khan made a pair of loose, lewd, lo-fi albums with fellow Montreal ex-pat and former bandmate BBQ—a.k.a. Mark Sultan. Three years after their lip-smacking What’s for Dinner?, the duo re-teams for another set of R&B-inflected, ’60s-influenced garage rock with its juvenile-delinquent charms and dirty minds intact.

“Tastebuds” is both ridiculously raunchy and insanely catchy, while “Anala” only hints at deeper indiscretions with its lascivious doo-wop backing vocals. “Third Ave” is a girl-group ballad writ small, but the limitations of the line-up—just Khan’s skuzzbucket guitar and BBQ’s primitive drums—make it sound bigger and more immediate than a retro retread has a right to be. More than just revivalists, the duo plays these decades-old styles like they never went out of fashion, which makes Invisible Girl a satisfying and strange record.