Music Reviews

Rock-n-Roll Au Go-Go

Volume 7

Devil Doll

The seventh installment in Devil Doll’s always-impressive Rock-n-Roll Au Go-Go series is, rather unsurprisingly by now, another solid winner. The theme is as simple as it’s genius: put four known-to-unknown kick-ass garage punk bands on one CD, give them two songs each, and let nature run its course. Works wonders every time, thanks to Devil Doll’s talent for separating the good bands from the shitty ones in a genre where there is an overabundance of both.

The filthy Antiseen, legends of Southern pub-punk kick off with the furious “I’m a Babyface Killer” and the groovy hard rawk of “Backlash,” both of them massively grinding, huge slabs of deep-fried rock, growled and thrashed rebel punk. I still have problems getting over their protectionist right-wing politics, but I’m starting to think they’re not as bad as they pretend to be. Or maybe I’m just in denial.

Pulpit Red’s snarling punk follows, a wickedly grinning act that’s probably too clever for its own good. The fiery “Tunnel Of Time” would be enough to convince most of us, but they surpass themselves on “Cocked And Ready,” a piece of Joy Division-ish post-punk that blends Public Image Limited’s jagged presence with a crooner-Bowie chorus, before an explosion of arrogantly strutting punk rock hits us.

Nova Express have got Iggy Pop’s cool and The New York Dolls’ strut down, and both songs on here are absolutely great. Dirty, scruffy hard rock, complete with an overabundance of classic 1970s hard rock riffing. Brilliant stuff.

Nutrajet are something completely different. On “Up With the Lovely” they come across like a male-fronted Blondie playing Beatles-infused punk rock, while “Vicious Intent” offers stylish, layered garage. Carefully arranged power-pop that looks to Cheap Trick and Big Star, while all the same basing itself on punk-y 1960s garage punk. Refreshing and vital.

Devil Doll Records:

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