Here’s a band I’ve long heard of but thought I’d never hear. The Klitz may or may not be Memphis’s first punk band (in the “yes” camp is longtime Memphis musician Ross Johnson; in the “no” camp is Klitz founder Gail Elise Clifton). The Sounds of Memphis recordings are lo-fi (likely more out of necessity, considering the time, than stylistically) but there is power that jumps off the tape. More powerful than, say the Like Flies on Sherbert sessions (of which The Klitz cover “Hook or Crook.”) As an aside, I put off buying LOFSfor so long, due to high sticker price and being wary of Alex Chilton’s self-sabotaging tendencies. When I finally got LOFS, I was let down. I could tell the songs have a solid foundation, but the half-ass playing and don’t-give-a-fuck attitude really take away from the songs. The Klitz make up for this in spades. Brought to you from the vaults by Austin-by-way-of-So Cal Spacecase Records, the label that loves Memphis music more than I do!
–Sal Lucci (Spacecase, spacecaserecords.com)