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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Prima Donna

Bless This Mess

Review by Gary Hill

Hard rock that combines punk, roots rock and goth along with new wave, this is tasty. It’s not exceptionally groundbreaking or original, but this particular blend of sounds is unique. These guys have created an entertaining and potent disc that sure to please a lot of people.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2012  Volume 2 at

Track by Track Review

Energetic and fun, this rocker has a real punk rock meets space music vibe to it. There is almost a Gary Numan vibe with some new wave and punk sounds merging with power pop, too.

The intro here is more pure punk, but then it shifts to a more retro garage rock style. It’s another high energy tune that’s a lot of fun.
Feral Children
Far less punk oriented, this is just a good roots rocker that’s got a lot of energy.
Although the vocals feel different and the arrangement has more of an old time rock texture, this reminds me a lot of Cheap Trick, perhaps with some Elvis Costello thrown into it.
Let The Games Begin
This comes in a bit like the Ramones, but then turns out to something like a cross between Cheap Trick and the Rolling Stones.
Bless This Mess
The Rolling Stones are definitely a valid reference on this bluesy rocker. There’s a cool retro sounding keyboard solo later in the tune and some punkier moments at points.
Miss Avenue
Feeling a lot like the horn laden period of Aerosmith, this is one of the most pure rocking numbers here. It’s a lot of fun and full of energy.
Staring Daggers
Rock and roll meets punk rock and other sounds on this cut. It’s a fun roots rocker that’s just tasty.
Crimson Lust
This certainly is closely tied to punk rock. It’s raw, high energy and fun. It reminds me of The Lords of the New Church a bit, but without the keyboards that often laced their songs. This is arguably the highlight of the set.
The bass drives this piece and it’s got a stripped down arrangement. It’s one part Lords of the New Church and one part indie rock from the 1960s. It’s another cool tune and one of the most unique pieces to be found here.
P*t*, Te Amo
High energy punk with some rock and roll makes up the concept here. The lyrics are pretty rough, but considering that I actually censored the Spanish title, that should go without saying. They can swear in English and Spanish – that’s impressive. There’s a saxophone solo on this tune.
She Says
Roots rock and roll combined with punk is the order of the day here. Again, The Lords of the New Church is a valid comparison.
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