Thursday, January 22, 2009

Labor Party
Hellhound Down

‘Drive 6 hours in the pouring rain to play to 2 bar tenders and a cat with a cane’ – Show To Do

Praise be. Nope, not any political posticulating about presidents elect and defect, climate change or global eco-chafing this particular Labor Party show outlaw Rock’n’Roll ain’t hitting no recession. From the motel fetish cover to the highway surfing, white-line raising, tarmac tyrants, this Arizona trio revel in unexpurgated glee at the view from the gutters on this unassumingly strident salvo of garage crank-punk. There may be no fucker putting money in their pockets but no snide bastards spoon-feeding their words and they can’t get enough of that, and neither should we. Luckily then, this is their fourth album in six years, and drop this and you see why. Praise be part two as rousing beer anthem punk like this can so easily resemble the most turgid tripe from the dregs of UK Oi, or, well, most Oi, in lesser hands. Like The Cramps could say in imitation of Dolly, it takes a lotta smarts to be so simplistically perfect. But these low-rent, low-slung fun-gunners got the bounce, the swing n’ vitality full of sassattitude, fun and hell, crazy cutes, mounting their manifesto’s on trashy but tight banners of bedraggled, genuine, affecting, good time, goof-trash anthems for outsiders and underdogs in the know not on the nod. You can user this as a yardstick to measure posers by, but beating ‘em with it’d defeat the point. I ain’t advocating vio-lence, just stick this on again and jump, jive n’ jape like a baby penguin while the suckers sequester themselves into a jail. Underground Christmas, Lower East Side Yuppie, Major Matt Mason, We Don’t Want To and Show To Do all rattle round the universe and your backyard like a frantic Fuzztones running outta tonic for the gin – the last a road song in the same sweaty leathers as The Weaklings’ Life On The Road or Murder City Devils' Ready For This, glorying in the sublimely grim acceptance of the life and times of such a low-level, high grade band. No tepid posturing and tantrum-throwing poses but get down and on with it grinds in a playpen that’ll make you bite n’ scratch n’ scream many a night. N’ day. While providing most of the recommended daily allowance of essential vitamins and nutrients to spur anyone on with a healthy necessity for being whipped into several states of seizure on the unadulterated Rock’n’Roll rifle range. Right, let’s end the verbal there as by the time I’ve calmed down with some country they’ll hopefully have recorded another readily edible honest to goodness set.
Stu Gibson

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