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Les Pauls and Breaking Glass | Compilation of Sin City | review | punk | rock | compilation | Lollipop

Les Pauls and Breaking Glass

A Compilation of Various Sin City Artists (Cold Front)
by Craig Regala

Great take on the good ol' rock and roll apres '77 division. Much like - and sharing bands with - the Fistful of Rock series, the songs contained within utilize the '70s black leather continuum. That being a trajectory of short, sharp shocks born of the reentry of three minute rockabilly raving to blues rock, glam rocks get-to-the-hook-outrage-the-squares (read: hippies as well as mum and dad) modus operendi and a refinement/explosion of the Who/Kinks chopped chord tension that ended up as Johnny Ramone's tremendous gift to the rock vocabulary. The Ramones weren't just an ironic return to "simpler times." Listen to the progressions of the guitaring; it shatters the easy lope of "rock and roll" in a taut, extremely physical manner. Early Kiss weren't a precursor to "heavy metal" but an over-the-top "hard rock" band much more indebted to what was to be called "power pop" as well as straight on urban street corner signifying pop via Dion and the Belmonts. The Damned were the most gonzo kick-ass of the Brit '77 class, living out the berserk edge of what-the-fuck-to-do with the Stooges wind tunnel blend of bad acid psychedelia, garage rock, and fin de siecle urges played as rock and roll.

And it's all older than a kid graduating from college, born when its formal elements were well in place. Luckily, no one here is intent on straight recreation. Roots are roots and are often sped up or fused. So what you get here, you've probably already heard, therefore it's really dependent on the songs. Here you get 11 really good ones, and an oldie from the Dead Boys that finds 'm in "social protest" form. "Eve of Destruction" simpleton statements wedded to trimmed-down baroque Lefte Band/Choir late-'60-ism's. Some stuff was unreleased for a reason. My favorite here's "High School" by the Bellrays. The tune's good with a fantastic singer as adept at rough-cut soul as rock shouting - a tour with Zen Guerrilla and the Dirtbombs is in order. Here's the list of the guilty: American Heartbreak, Cherry 13, Toilet Boys, Libertine, Dead Boys, Street Walkin' Cheetahs, Electric Frankenstein, El Diablo, Candy Snatchers.
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