Here’s the rumor and I think it’s true. When Japan’s Teengenerate, arguably one of the best garage, trash bands ever to grace our planet, finished Get Action! for Crypt in ‘94, it was too clean, too poppy. They were told to re-record it in its all lo-fi, scratchy sock, ripped jean, tight shirt deviant glory. Years passed. Members splintered off, then got back together. This time, they kept the initial recording direction. Melodies and harmonies reign supreme. Livin’ on the Heat is a genuinely stellar power pop album of the highest magnitude. This proves two things. These dudes are no one-trick ponies and they’re in it for the right reasons. Why start all over again with a new name when the fanbase is there? Because the music itself is important. Good is good, no matter what the style. Fifi, Fink, Sammy, and Jimbo’ve gotta protect the rock, you know what I mean? Don’t let the kindergarten hymn book-looking cover, the dubious name of the band, or the fifteen dollars you’ll have to spend since it’s currently only available on import sway you. Think of all the time it’s going to be spinning in your player. Brilliance for pennies on the dollar. Definitely in my top twenty for the year. It may even rise higher. It’s one of those albums that reveals itself slowly.
–todd (Mangrove, in the US, get it via Nice and Neat)