5 out of 5
Label: World Domination
Produced by: Davis McCain, Doug Easley, Dave Allen, Josh Kramer (“gears”)
Every now and then, the kids will start floating around some current nominee for the hardest rock band ever. They’ll cite Zeppelin riffery, and pounding drums, and wild vocals, and I’ll smile in that “you youngins” wistful and judgmental way and slowly gambol back to my cavernous abode, cueing up the ol’ gramophone with Latimer’s LP Title and think, “you boys and girls have no idea.” In 1995, these Philadelphia boys dropped this most momentous recording, which, 20+ years on, still shatters my expectations on every spin, one-upping its intensity from track to track.
But I have to admit: I got lucky in discovering this gem, picking it up for simply namedropping Davis McCain and Doug Easley, in whose studio some Grifters’ discs were borne. My ears thank me for that CD-shopping hunt-and-peck skill, though. And that band – along with Latimer’s World Domination label’s owner, Dave Allen… of Gang of Four… offer a perfect cross-section of the oddly rootsy, punked out guitar madness found on LP Title. The lead singer may have a nasally delivery, but it ends up being a perfect match for the dueling guitars and absolutely thunder-striking drums, rocketing us through speed blasts like kiss 120, yet also capable of navigating bass-driven grooves as on Chicken The Goon.
It’s a band – and album – deserving of millions of pounds of praise. Alas, they’ve got a handful of internet reviews, and they’ve got me. One day, kids, one day you’ll understand what real rock music is all about…