LOS REACTORS: Dead in the Suburbs: CD

This long-defunct (as in 1983 kinda defunct) Tulsa band kinda reminds me of the Diodes, and i’m having trouble figuring out if that’s because of legit musical similarities or because the Diodes had that song “Death in the Suburbs” or what. Probably a little bit o’ both. Anyway, it always makes me a little happy, in here (thumps ribcage) (coughs up blood), to see bands from Way Back When get something resembling an album out, even if it is twenty-plus years late. I mean, fuck, they deserve it, and i don’t think a lot of people these days realize what an impossible dream it seemed like Way Back When to get an album out. ALL HAIL YOUR UNDERDOCUMENTED EFFORTS, O BAND! That said, i could pretty much take or leave Los Reactors musically—they sound like the basic Central Time Zone punk/rock/wave of the late ‘70s/early ‘80s (i’m really not so sure the perpetually whistling keyboards aren’t just in the way most of the time, and the topical subject matter [John Wayne Gacy, Patty Hearst, the Shah of Iran] that i’m sure seemed timeless and edgy and brilliant and irreverent at the time now comes off as some sort of mere cultural identifier, like something from That ‘70s Show or something), and, with all due respect for their efforts (efforts which we still reap the benefits of today, i might add), when hardcore came along, although it didn’t exactly kick this type of band to the curb, per se, it did show it to its seat… which it took, pretty much never to be heard from again. It’s unfortunate that the origins of the various recordings are so poorly documented here, i woulda liked to have known when they wrote and recorded the neo-thrasher “I Don’t Wanna Be Like You,” just so’s i could tell if it was like them reading the “hardcore rules!” handwriting on the wall or what… I’d also like to have had the liner notes written by a member of N.O.T.A. or something, just to put things into historical perspective for me… it certainly couldn’t be any worse than the existing blather (i mean, the liner note guy calls Los Reactors one of Tulsa’s “most prolific” bands in the same paragraph he states that the band only released two 45s during the four years of their existence). Chee! (of course, if the guy who wrote the liner notes actually was in N.O.T.A. unbeknownst to me, i apologize to the planet) BEST SONG: “You Move Me” BEST SONG TITLE: “Dying Persian Monarch” FANTASTIC AMAZING TRIVIA FACT: The video doesn’t play in my computer OR my DVD player… but, since it’s Track 01 on the disc, if you put it in a CD player and wait a while, it will play THEE LOUDEST PROLONGED BLAST OF STATIC you have ever heard in your life. I gay-ron-tee!

 –norb (Rip Off)