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Donnas | Turn 21 | review | punk | Lollipop

The Donnas

Turn 21 (Lookout!)
by Scott Hefflon

Donna R. really learned how to play that there geetar! While I'm more of a fan of The Donnas early, sloppy, punky stuff (the self-titled compilation of early singles and stuff that Lookout! released is way and away my fave), there's a lot to like about The Donnas as they grow up... The production is significantly better, the guitarwork is raunchy AC/DC, the drummer's learned how to keep time, the bass is a more significant instrument, and Donna A. has a lot more confidence in her vocals. And they're right on, as usual, with the cutesy lyrics (girls singing about making out behind the club is infinitely sexier than yet another boy band saying he'll love some skirt forever). So if you liked 'em before, you'll like 'em now. And if yer new, well, good for you.

Only real problem I've had with these girls is the lack of umph! in the vocal delivery. I mean, I understand the comfortable speak/sing style, but there's a belting-out quality totally lacking here (sure, the early stuff was more yelping than belting, but there was passion and a no-holds-barred go-for-it absent ever since). Shit, watch old footage of Bon Scott onstage and see what being a frontperson is all about and you'll never forgive the half-assed efforts of practically any singer alive today. Sure, it ain't fair to compare The Donnas to classic AC/DC, but the guitarwork leapt forward and it'd be nice if everyone else worked that hard.
(PO Box 11374 Berkeley, CA 94712)  

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