The Bad Guy's got an arm about your Best Girl; she doesn't know it yet, but in the final third she'll come to her senses, belatedly, and tell you that you've always been the one for her. Perhaps you'll punch out the Bad Guy in the car park outside your high school prom; for now, though, the light's on red and the fender's twitching. Shoot an eye right: he's there, smirk on his face, certain you're going to eat his dust; certain that such overt displays of stereotypical masculinity make your Best Girl moist about the edges. Well, he'll see, and she'll see too: you thrust the stick into position, ride the clutch and ready a right foot over the gas. You thrust a cassette into the deck before you as the light descends to amber. Crowded House? Shit, son, you're roadkill.
What you needed was someone riding shotgun, ready with The Specimens' The Quick And The Deaf to hand, ready to soundtrack your tearing down to the turnpike, three years ahead of your love rival. Yeah, the title's an awful pun, perhaps the worst five words anyone's seen on a record sleeve this year; the artwork, too, is fairly far from inspired, a guitar-under-the-microscope (or simply a camera rammed up against the strings) playing up to every last R 'n' R cliché. But the music here, these ten tracks, is the most perfect thing you'll hear in an age, as far as drag racing's concerned. This is dumb rock and punkin' roll, young and played with the kind of sweaty intensity that characterises Turbonegro, Rocket From The Crypt and Zeke. It's all "One, two, fuck you", sing-along lyrics about chasing down that stray-away gal from a block over, and song titles straight out of the Ten Commandments of Rock and Roll. Number seven: you should name your songs after the subject matters at hand, however simple. Thus, we have 'Kiss On The Lips', 'One Man Rampage' and the rather graphic 'Get On Top'. Our protagonist doesn't want to seem lazy, but he'd much prefer it if, y'know, the girl in question did the hard work for him. Could be worse we suppose; could be 'Meet Me For Dogging At Four'.
If intellectual, forward-thinking rock music has floated your whatever this year, then these Australians are unlikely to offer you anything to sink your teeth into. However, if you've reached the end of 2005 without sufficient parties behind you, you could do so much worse than slam this into your in-car music machine and watch every light stick on green from here to the picture's predictable-enough climax. Floor it, son - such displays of foolhardy big-headedness do indeed get the lady excitable.
6Mike Diver's Score