Sequels are rarely as good as the first installment. However, leading your latest book off with quotes from legendary DJs Cosmo Murphy and John Peel provides a promising sign of good things ahead. Thankfully this is indeed the case with Tenaya and Andre Darlington’s follow-up to their most enjoyable Booze & Vinyl inaugural edition from 2020.
The premise remains largely unchanged: a listening and cocktail party based around a vinyl record paired with one or two recipes as an accompaniment to whatever is on the turntable/CD player/non-streaming music player of choice (although they do emphasize vinyl, and I am inclined to agree). While I haven’t worked my way through the book in its entirety, I am pleased to report that the Roxy Music, Stereolab (two of my favorite bands), and Wu-Tang entries are exercises worthy of the records from which their inspiration is based. The complexities of the recipes vary from album to album, with Beyonce’s Lemonade Prosecco Punch being one of the easiest I’ve seen in quite some time. But there’s something here for every skill level and genre of music. “Oaxacan In Your Footsteps” (The Police) gets my nod for the cleverest recipe name, and there was quite the missed opportunity with LCD Soundsystem’s “Get Innocuous.”
Should there be a third edition, I hope the Darlingtons dig a bit deeper in the crates to present classics or cult favorites lost to time and use their pulpit to present these deserving records to a larger audience. But fans of the first volume will find little-to-no fault and lots of fun in this book, which beats the cursed sophomore slump. Here’s hoping another installment (focusing on best third albums? Parklife? Reign in Blood? Buhloone Mindstate? Raw Power? Midnight Maurauders? Check Your Head?) is around the corner.
There is also a new card matching game available which collects several recipes from both volumes in the series. The premise is to match one card with the album cover with a corresponding cocktail recipe, and then create the drink as players go along throughout the night. The premise is straightforward and easy to follow, and the presentation is excellent. While this may be a fun game at parties, it’s not exactly conducive to my current testing environment, which is enjoying a Cherry-Coloured Funk (Cocteau Twins “Heaven or Las Vegas”) solo.
Book: A – / $22 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]
Card Game: B+ / $16 [BUY IT NOW FROM AMAZON]