THE GOTHAM ROCKETS – Blast Off! EP

New York’s Gotham Rockets are first and foremost a party band. Representing so much you loved about the mid-late 70s and recycling it for a twenty-first century audience, their debut EP features four feel good tunes, heavy on the saxophone and even heavier on high octane good vibes. The production values are a little ragged, but its songs provide a good old rock ‘n’ roll injection that’ll appeal to fans of the band’s label mates The Dirty Truckers and Nat Freedberg along with a few other retro sounds from yesteryear.

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NAT FREEDBERG – Better Late Than Never

A cult hero from Boston, Nat Freedberg has recorded with The Titanics, The Clamdiggers, The Flies…and likely lots of other acts labelled with the definitive article. Always a champion of a natural sound, his best works have a very old spirit and the best bits of 2019’s ‘Better Late Than Never’ could stand alongside Strange Majik in terms of exuding an all-round retro cool…at least on musical terms.

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CHEAP GUNSLINGERS – Cheap Gunslingers

Formed in 2015 by one-time Gotohells man Edo McGrady and guitarist/performance artist Melissa DuCasse, Cheap Gunslingers set about creating a sound that blended garage rock riffs with a few power pop hooks and plenty of fuzz. By the time of recording their debut LP four years later, Melissa wasn’t such a big player within the band, appearing only on three tracks (and two of those are for backing vocals), but between McGrady’s sheer sense of drive and a pleasingly dirty sound, the Cheap Gunslingers were far from depleted.

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THE PEAWEES – Dead End City

Formed in the mid 90s as a punk outfit, The Peawees quickly established themselves as a band to look out for on the European scene. Over the next few years, they became musically stronger and eventually injected their sound with some good old rock ‘n’ roll attitude. A firm fan favourite, their third album ‘Dead End City’ was issued on Stardumb Records in 2001. The first pressing sold out in record time; a second pressing sold out very quickly and a vinyl reissue on Stardumb featuring bonus tracks was snapped up by eager fans, always keen for a Peawees fix. Although considered one of the band’s very best albums and a European punk classic, it took until 2019 for the album to gain a CD reissue and a US release…

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Free download: The Peawees – ‘Cause You Don’t Know Me

After over two decades in the business, Italian garage rock/power pop band The Peawees have created more than a musical legacy.  Their 2018 LP ‘Moving Target’ provided an excellent insight into the band’s style – a great listen for anyone unfamiliar with the band – delivering great hook after great hook.  A tribute to Phil Spector on the suitably titled ‘Phil Spector’ provided an album highlight on a track big on retro riffs and even bigger on sleigh bells.

A new track, ‘You Don’t Know Me’ adds further to the band’s legacy with a three minute, guitar driven blaster that combines the more commercial feel of early 90s Social Distortion with the chorus thrills of Gaslight Anthem, all wrapped up in something that pays homage to ‘I Fought The Law’.

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