Adrian Cooper has been unwell

Old reviews that are no longer available online, or from sites that no longer exist. The pen is dead, long live the camera.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Rocket From The Crypt

Since Rocket From The Crypt last appeared this side of the Atlantic a couple of years ago, as 'On A Rope' became the soundtrack to that particular summer, San Diego's original switchblade rockabilly boys have built up a formidable reputation based around frenetic their live shows, matching shirts, ridiculous nomes de plume, and even more ridiculous interview techniques. So, following another successful season of festival appearances by releasing their most mediocre album so far probably wasn't part of the masterplan.

As much as 'Scream, Dracula, Scream' was a disappointing listen after the superlative 'Circa: Now' and 'Paint As A Fragrance', 'RFTC' continues the downward trend, as the now formulaic rock'n'roll work-outs are punctuated by a number of weak tracks which veer far too close towards ballad territory for comfort. The worst culprit of this is 'Let's Get Busy', which sees Speedo failing to impersonate the Afghan Whigs' Greg Dulli, unable to match the ever present threatening tone with which Dulli serenades his devoted legions.

Elsewhere, the Crypt return to a more familiar environment to produce the few highlights contained on the album, such as the ode to animal genitalia that is 'Dick On A Dog', and attempt to kick-start a new dance craze with 'When In Rome'. Unfortunately, these lonely highlights are outnumbered by the likes of 'Panic Scam' (essentially a straight rewrite of the 'On A Rope'); 'Eye On You' (a failed collaboration with Holly Golighty of the Headcoatees); and the glam-rock strop of new single 'Break It Up' which rips it's intro straight from the Beatles' 'Revolution'.

In interview earlier this year, Speedo claimed that the title 'RFTC' wasn't the abbreviated band name, but in fact was an acronym meaning run for the caves, as the animals were about to attack. On the basis of this album, the Crypt would be better hiding from the fans until they rediscover the spirit that used to make them so vital.