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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Coffin Daggers

Aggravatin' Rhythms

Review by Gary Hill

I guess these guys are considered punk by some people. Sure, they do occupy a lot of the same musical territory as groups like The Cramps. I’d say their sound is even more legitimately retro, though. The closest comparison I would make is a modern day Ventures. There are some non-lyrical vocals on one song, but beyond that, this is purely instrumental. It’s also great.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2016  Volume 3 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Aggravatin Rhythms

Organ starts this with a weird retro texture. Eventually some guitar joins, bringing more of a retro element. Then some crunch guitar is added to the mix. The organ and other things keep the cool retro sounds in place, while that metallic guitar brings a modern edge. This is a cool opener that really rocks.

Instigator
Take the Ventures and add in some cool “Munsters” sound. Of course the two sounds are heavily related anyway. This is a smoking hot hard rocker that’s energetic and fun.
Ghost Train
This is another killer tune with old school rock and roll built into it. Imagine The Cramps merging with The Ventures.
The Sinister Urge
Here we get a slow and moody cut. This has a real creepy texture to it. It gets more energy added later, and I love the pounding drums. Overall, this is a great retro crypt groove. Some of the guitar soloing later even makes me think of Pink Floyd a bit.
Uprising!
The old school Ventures like rock and roll sound is all over this killer jam.
The Spy
There are some non-lyrical female vocals on this. The organ solos all over the cut. This is an energetic driving tune.
Kreepy Krawl
I love the main riffs here. Again, the organ is a big factor. This is another large slice of “cool.”
Wake Up Screaming
Now, this fast paced cut leans toward heavy metal. While it’s more modern, it still has some Dick Dale-like guitar. It’s a real powerhouse that’s among the best things here.
Three Blue Stars
This cool tune really could pass for a Ventures song as far as I’m concerned. That’s a positive in my book.
Concussion
Drums lead this out of the gate. As the other instruments join, the guitar brings some hard rock while the organ lends the retro textures. The organ solo is classy stuff.
Head One
There is a really hard edge to this beast. Yet it still features much of the same retro texture. It’s another classy hard rocker.
Side Arm
In a lot of ways this makes me think of early B-52s. Of course, the usual suspects are also present here. This is another tasty morsel.
Five-Five
The organ soloing on this is on fire. Blend Booker T. and the MGs with some hard edged, almost punky rock and roll and you’ll be in the right vicinity.
The Thing
An incendiary rocker, this is a great closer.

 

 
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