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Monday, June 22, 2015

Redray Frazier
"Blood In the Water: (self)

Redray's gospel-singing youth left singular imprint on his warm vocal manner, and it is ever apparent in this 6-song set - at turns electrically animated and soulfully bluesy. A former David Byrne touring band cornerstone, Redray opens up his heart and frees the humanity that all share and intuitively recognize, but few can so eloquently articulate.

"I've always listened to various styles of music," he once revealed. "Everything from Curtis Mayfield to the Alabama Shakes. It doesn't matter to me, as long as the music has heart."

A full-length disc is currently planned, with contributions being amassed at

Recommended "Blood In the Water," "Follow Me," "If You Let Me," "

Mad Sin
"Burn and Rise" (People Like You, 2012)

Flailing and stomping deep within this vivid all moving/all twisted German psychobilly sideshow, an itinerant freak-of-nature tent celebration choreographed by the starring misshapen black leather-jacketed oddities themselves, is a fearsome and formidable rock and roll attack squad that makes delightedly blasphemous converts of all forever-lost souls who swarm to their outrageous altar. Each high voltage moment seethes, slams, storms. And if no one gets out alive, that's because no one arrived that way to begin with.

Recommended “Cursed,” “Wreckhouse Stomp,” "Back From the Morgue," "Shitlist Bop," "No Control," “She's Evil,” "Am I Human," “Geisterfahrer.” 

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Koffin Kats
"Born of the Motor" (Sailor's Grave, 2013)

The high-speed Koffin Kats are Vic Victor's show. His unique, soaring vocals distinguish the legendarily tenacious band from others in the tattooed pack. He stands as an immediately identifiable stylist, of which there are few. Ambitious and inventive arrangements stop, start, twist, turn, gallop, and jet-zoom with exuberance unfeigned. The superior material demands suitably adroit, heavyweight players; such are marshaled here in heartfelt common cause.

Recommended "All of Me Is Gone," "This Heart (Stays On Ice)," "Born of the Motor," "The Collector," "Devil Tales," "It's Real"

The Brains
"No Brain, No Pain" (Crazy Love)

Among psychobilly's fastest and loudest streamlined wrecking trains. Leathery Rene D La Muerte, Colin the Dead, and Phil the Beast add into the Brains' unsettling vibe elements of horror-show nightmare totems and screamed asylum witnessing. The unstable admixture can and does explode, and realities splinter into ruin. Hear a blast furnace hurled as hyperkinetic projectile. 

Recommended "No Brain, No Pain," "Full Moon Overseas," "20 Beers," "Taste Your Blood," "Sick Boy"

"What Happens In Hell Stays In Hell" (Hellcat, 2011)

Changes for this longtime global scene favorite, though the quality remains at high altitude. Incoming members Franc (guitar) and Lux (drums) charge each booming passage with pumped muscle. Each is equal to the ambitious, fast-forward rampage. For his part, coffin-bass beating leader Kim Nekroman is his usual good-naturedly wicked self. The wrecking master from Denmark sings in admirably tuneful and familiar moon-howling fashion. A mind-ravaging addiction for which no healing elixir is desired.    
Recommended "Bats In My Pants," "Once We Were Lovers," "Demon Speed," "Sleepwalker With a Gun," "I Kissed a Ghoul," "Love You Deadly" 


Saturday, June 20, 2015

Demented Are Go
"Welcome Back To Insanity Hall" (People Like You, 2012)

Behold if you dare these bug-eyed and bellowing lost souls forsaken by all that men hold holy:

Their faces streaked with garish ghastliness and bloody claw-tracings, they jerk-dance like epileptic puppets in multi-technicolored, bombastic spectacle, vomiting lunatic gallows-humor that is equally assured plundering final resting plots or wallowing in bawdy X-rated degradations. Whether at crazed speeds that defy rational scientific laws, loping casually to medium-paced, low-slung rockabilly pulse-beats, or rocketing into uncharted delirium, this must forever remain locked away in its own criminally psycho rank.    

It is strangely hypnotic and so we listen, time and again. But may none of us know this abhorrence but from our safe distance.  

Recommended "Bodies In the Basement," "Devil Says Kill," "Heads On Poles," "The Life I Live," "So Agitated" (bonus track)

VIDEO "Bodies In the Basement"

Lance "Romance" Bakemeyer
"30 Years of Rockabilly" (Rockin' Cat)

Lance is the big bass-slappin', song-crafting founder of the storied Hillbilly Hellcats and a longtime first-chair musician in his own right. Neo-rockabilly, psychobilly, hillbilly...if it rocks, Lance has played it - and better than most, too. Have doghouse, will travel. 

He has now collected a representative sample of stellar moments from his distinguished career. Presented are not just clever and agreeably rollicking Hellcats classics (many of which turned up in TV and film soundtracks), but momentous collaborations with some of contemporary rockabilly's finest players, including Jinx Jones, Danny B. Harvey, and "Taz" Bentley. It isn't often that one finds so much talent of this caliber on one record. 

The woods are full of aspirants to rockin' glory. A few will make it. When they do, they'll find Lance waiting.

Recommended "Dead Man's Party," "Roadkill Cafe," "Mudflap Baby," "Rockinest Cat In Town," "Hillbilly Cat," "Beer and a Girl," "Mad Dog Twist," "My Baby's Rockabilly," "Ol' Bobcat"

VIDEO "My Baby's Rockabilly" 

Frantic Vermin
"Right Now!" (self)

There is growled and driven, psycho-side thundering here, and that alone would satiate. But there is more: Rock and roll's diverse charms are styled with manifest, onrushing relish. Whether bluntly rambunctious, bouyant, enjoying ska-stepped benefit, or pacifically instrumental the songs rivet and rouse.

Recommended "Evil In the Night," "Bedlam Bound," "Summerleaze Beach," .
"Three Men Seeking Monsters"

VIDEO "Three Men Seeking Monsters"

"Doing the Lord's Work (People Like You, 2012)

From the lowest of pitch black unholy depths the sneering and leering Kings of Psychobilly soar easily over all pathetic would-be rivals for the crown of razors. Their savage and execrably evil psalms, forged in a morbid hate-kiln, would doubtless terrify innocents into desperate, scrambling escape were the addictive songs not in the finest rebellious spirit of eternally waylaying rock and roll.  

Recommended "My Psychobilly Syndrome," "Strange Times Are Coming," "My Life For Thee," "Girl Meat Fever," "Drag You Down To Hell," "Hell Must Be Empty (All the Demons Are Here)," "Fuck Your World"

VIDEO "Strange Times Coming"

"Life Is a Grave, And I Dig It" (Hellcat, 2007)

Kim Nekroman understands what lesser psychos miss: the genre's morbid thematic and fashion accouterments should never preclude acknowledgement that the whole enterprise is show business, ala Grand Guignol. Unpretentiousness frees his band to out-play nearly everyone.
Recommended Tracks "Life Is a Grave and I Dig It!,""Horny In A Hearse," "Rot In Hell," "My Girl," "Voodoo Shop Hop," "Fantazma," "Flowers Are Slow"

Tiger Army
"Music From Regions Beyond" (Hellcat)

Nick 13's romantic psycho-fantasy winged from Bay Area punk spots to shiny notices in Rolling Stone, Penthouse, and the New York Times. The melodic power-chord storm drenches and the lyrical voice remains a sentient, poetic one. No monsters, save for very human ones - the worst of all.

Recommended Tracks: "Forever Fades Away," "Spring Forward," "Pain," "Ghosts of Memory" 

VIDEO "Forever Fades Away"

Friday, June 19, 2015

"Coming Home Drunk" (self)

Hurtling juggernauts of psycho fury, 
their raucous rampaging is made 
still more special by crunched 
windshield blast vocals that skid 
across hardcore punk parking lots 
and blast-capacity guitar that churns, 
reels, and riffs wickedly at the dead 
center of the concrete jungle uproar. 

Recommended "Psychobilly Cadillac 
Hearse," "Lookout," "85 To Stay Alive," 
"One Hell of a Man," "Red Eye Revue"

VIDEO "Psychobilly Cadillac Hearse"


"Dance of the Dead" (Live Dead)


As chilling night-winds shriek past, whipping 
betwixt gnarled and leafless oak limbs that 
bear mournful witness overhead, jaggedly 
stitched leather monsters lurk in the shadows 
of stony vaults long forsaken by sacrosanct 
grace and abandoned to waste and perdition.

Leader Daniel DeLeon raises up hacked-agape 
and unspeakable psychobilly anatomies, 
articulating each twisted horror with piercing 
intellect. He exhorts and howls as befits the 
shifting, unearthly moonlit pageantry. Gleefully 
maniacal misfit mates loose brain-splitting 
abetment, urged to breakneck ferment by the 
clarion roar of Daniel's angry guitar.  

It is indeed a most appropriate soundtrack for 
midnights of raucous and macabre netherworldly 

Recommended "Ghost of You," "Bride of 
Frankenstein," "Rockin' In Your Coffin," 
"Dead By Dawn," "Ghost Town," 
"Vampire Kiss"

VIDEO "Rockin' In Your Coffin"

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Karina Denike
"Under Glass" (self)

In nimble, winged boots and with whimsical, chimerical alchemy abubble, Karina skips first one way then that, turning up winking emeralds along angling avenues of jazzy piquance. The happy hearer never knows what shimmering technicolor silhouette will next loom as snaring song follows delicious ditty; the finest riches, of course, lie in the wondrous odyssey, itself.     

Recommended "Park It," "Persephone," "Aviatrix," " Musee Mechanique," "Havin' a Go," "Sideshow"

Monday, June 15, 2015

Jessica Lee Wilkes
"Lone Wolf" (Free Dirt)

Its footloose freedom from care an immediate attraction, this economical, effectual five-cut EP slides listeners up into a retro hip-shaking party dimension, one from which few are likely to seek return. The finger-popping, clapped satisfactions of the forward '50s/'60s-type rock'n'roll here dealt derive no little finger-licking flavor from smokily potent, old-school r&b and soul. 

For some five years, boldly voiced bassist Jessica Lee established herself as a stalwart, driving member of JD Wilkes and the Dirt Daubers. She now commands center spotlight with singular authority.  

Throwing out swingalong ruckus at her elbow are agile, energetic JD McPherson drummer Jason Smay, legendarily rampaging surf/rockabilly guitar icon Eddie Angel (Los Straitjackets, Robert Gordon, Planet Rockers), and Hooten Hallers' good-time saxophone vociferant Kellie Everett - whose boisterous, dance floor-quaking exhortations recall Lee Allen. 

If you won't be spinning this good-time wax at your next quarter party, notify groove-digging neighborhood hipsters so they can make other plans. 

Recommended "Go Ahead Baby," "Groove's Too Shallow," "Love Like Crazy," 

Song clip "Love Like Crazy"