SILENCERSCyclerific Sounds(Total Energy)
PICTURE YOURSELF AT a jam-packed drive-in movie theater circa 1966 watching one of those sadistic, low-budget AIP biker flicks. Silencers, a Motor City instrumental trio, resurrects that Fuzz-O-Phonic wheelie poppin' soundtrack music made famous by Davie Allan and the Arrows. Allan, known as the king of the fuzz guitar, graced nearly all of the cheap, blasphemous late '60s chopper-and-chicks pictures with super-charged leads from his gnarly double-neck Mosrite. Cyclerific Sounds drips with the spirit of Allan's patented six-string squall -- courtesy of Arrows' disciple and monster guitar killer Eric Toth. Produced to exhaust-choking crudeness by ex-Gories (and current) Dirtbombs scuzz-guitarist-singer Mick Collins, this obvious tribute to Allan rumbles with sweat-dripping foulness and the freedom of an open-road cruise on a menacing Harley. A cover of the Ventures' "2000 Lb. Bee" buzzes with the ferocity of a swarm of angry hornets, Toth's distortion-ravaged guitar stinging everything that crosses its path. The somber "Sonny's Theme" (an homage to the sadistic John Cassavettes character in the film Devil's Angels) emits an unmistakable spaghetti-Western melody that would cause Clint Eastwood to wet himself searching for the ghost of Ennio Morricone. "Mr. Fruity Pants" crackles with the same full-throttle grunge and impending doom that Link Wray perfected on the instrumental street brawl classic "Rumble." The LSD freak-out jam of "Mouldy's Theme" closes the disc with the same fuzzed-out deconstruction of Allan's classic leather-and-chrome acid trip "Cycle-delic." -- Ron Bally
SPAINShe Haunts My Dreams(Restless Records)
SOMEBODY GET JOSH Hayden some Zoloft! The sad sack son of jazz great Charlie Hayden, Josh first drove us to the brink of suicide with The Blue Moods of Spain. No one could accuse him of mislabeling that first record, with enough subdued tempos, jazz atmospherics and lachrymose lyrics to make Mr. T cry. Now with erstwhile Beck drummer Joey Waronker (another beneficiary of music-biz nepotism: his dad was formerly the head of Atlantic Records) and bassist Merlo Podlewski, Hayden and company have actually recorded a VFW-hall polka record.
OK, that's a lie. It is, however, a wrist slasher that's less jazz-inflected and stimulating than the "Unchained Melody"-based Blue Moods. Hayden should have stuck with the jazz, but he's probably too intent on artistic notions of "expanding my musical repertoire" and "not following in my father's footsteps." At the very least he could have broadened his emotional range. The dude needs to lighten up!
For a handsome bastard, Hayden's lyrics indicate he's had more woman trouble than Slick Willy. From the title track to "Bad Woman Blues" to "Waiting for You to Come" (perhaps about something else?), Hayden projects a left-at-the-alter despair. Rather than an aggressive, Limp Bizkit-style woman bashing, he embraces the passive, wussified end of heartbreak. It is occasionally mollifying to listen to records like this, especially after being dumped or dumped on, but for God's sake put away all the sharp objects first. -- Curtis McCrary