MERCY KILLERS, THE: Self-Titled: CD

It always throws me for a loop that when an obscure but totally kickass band like the Weird Lovemakers has somehow entered the collective subconscious. I’d bet you a pound of gummi worms that the Mercy Killers, who are from New York and just released this disc, have never heard The Weird Lovemakers’ Electric Chump, which was released the better part of a decade ago in Tucson. I doubt that the Mercy Killers’ lead vocalist knows that he sounds almost exactly like Greg Pettix. But the similarities are uncanny. To think that they came to the same musical conclusions as the Lovemakers makes me smile. The Mercy Killers have that close-to-strangulated vocals and play not-too-fancy, but wonderfully effective punk rock that’s long on charm and short on trying to convince you that listening to them is in any way, shape, or form is cool. (It is, but in a way where you’ll reap the rewards of good music and little else. As it should be, in my humble opinion.) The only main difference between the Mercy Killers and the Lovemakers is the weirdness-o-meter is kept in check. There isn’t a ranchero song like “En Busca Dela Superfucie,” but if you put this on and said, “Look what I found. Weird Lovemakers demos!” I’d bet you another bag of gummi worms that you’d fool most people. I’ll be playing this a lot.

 –todd (The Mercy Killers, 15 Grandview Trail, Monroe, NY 10950)