Music Reviews

The Scofflaws

Record of Convictions

Moon SKA NYC

There are some bands that just have to be heard live. The Scofflaws are one of those bands. They’re easily one of my favorite bands, but their albums simply can’t compare to their live show. Oh, there are always some catchy original numbers (Record of Convictions boasts “I Can’t Decide,” “In the Basement,” and “Lost to the T.V.,” all of which stand toe-to-toe with Scofflaws classics like “Paul Getty” and “William Shatner”), interesting covers (Frank Zappa’s “Any Way the Wind Blows,” Ennio Morricone’s “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly,” and the Zombies’ “Time of the Season,” among others), and some tasty instrumentals (“Ga Juma” and the bluesy opener, “Show Band Anthem,” stand out), but nothing on record can compete with the energy of a Scofflaws live performance. I’d heard them do most of the album live on the last few trips through town, and comparing those renditions to the versions on the record is like comparing fresh squeezed orange juice to frozen concentrate. Record of Convictions is by no means a bad record, it’s just proof that, once again, you can’t capture lightning in a bottle, not even one that’s as glossily-produced as this one. Moon SKA NYC, P.O. Box 1412, Cooper Station, New York, NY 10276; http://www.moonska.com


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