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Modern Thieves (TKO
Records) Imagine if Dee Dee Ramone had fronted The Clash instead of
taking his rightful place as the bass player of the best band of all-time.
Sure, it probably would’ve been sorta cool, but I doubt either
The Clash or The Ramones would’ve gone on to become the truly awesome
bands they were if this had been the case.
Straightjacket instantly brings to mind this fictitious pairing.
The music is tight and reminiscent of early Clash, and singer Brian
Olson sounds quite a bit like Dee Dee, but the combination just doesn’t
completely work for me. Now
friends, I loved Dee Dee, but there was a reason Joey was the lead singer,
and that’s because his voice was a helluva lot better than anybody else
in The Ramones (and to give him his due, the vast majority of punk bands,
both past and present). And
now that I’ve ejaculated the preceding shee-ite, I’m going to climb
down from my fuckin’ high horse and admit that I actually do think that
Straightjacket is a pretty cool band, despite my panty twist about the
vocals. My favorites on Modern
Thieves are “The Call” (moving-yet-tough anthem about sticking
with your ideals) and “Blank” (a punchy, fierce number about a poor
sap who gets beaten down by life). These
particular songs- and a bunch of others on this release- are pretty fine,
and they lead me to believe that Straightjacket would be fun to see live.
And since they’re about to start touring to support this fucker,
get your asses out there and decide for yourselves if these mofos are
really the shit, and if I’m just being a twat about the vocals. –Ben