Sunday, August 3, 2008
In a most fortunate turn of events, San Francisco's Only Rock-n-Roll Band have reemerged after being absent for decades. Exalted Masters indeed, Crime have put out a rockin' new release. Original members Johny Strike and Hank Rank are joined by Mickey Tractor and Count Fink, but it may as well be Frankie Fix and Ron Ripper. It's almost as if they never stopped playing. The great Crime elements remain: the twin guitar attack, the high register bass runs, and the simple drumming. The overall sound is the classic Crime mixture of Rockabilly and Garage; the sum total being a kind of primitive Metal. It's loose, raw, ripped, and exciting. Exalted Masters is well recorded and cleanly mastered to boot. Finally, a Crime recording with some teeth, sound wise! The older Crime recordings are FUN, and Exalted Masters continues the trend. You get frantic punk, street swagger, and throbbing sex beat. There is even a guitar backed excerpt from Strike's novel, Ports of Hell, and it does not suck. These tunes have the irreverence and humor that is lacking in so much of the music produced in this, or any other era. The sound and feel of earlier waves of Rock-n-Roll is here in full force, and it's both refreshing and revealing. It's no wonder that they chose Masonic imagery for the cover. Music like this has practically had to become a secret society in the wake of music industry pap for dollars pyramid schemes. Where can I learn the secret handshake?