RIVER CITY TANLINES: All 7 Inches Plus 2 More: CD

Yup. Alicja Trout (see this issue’s cover) has got it going on, no two ways about it. Leaving barely any time to lick the wounds of the dearly departed Lost Sounds, she’s back in the van, recording more songs, and expanding her already impressive catalog of music. The Tanlines are a stripped-down (not ripped off, not strip mined) three-piece rockin’ machine. Rock, as in dirty and anxious, but well calculated and not bloated nor pussyfooting with needless solos. Both T-Money and Bubba John (I believe) have served time with RL Burnside and it shows: power and direction instead of being a wankalicious, pout-lipped affair. The band, as a whole, makes me think of decay, chipped glasses of gasoline, and broken porches: fire amongst the ruins, watching the flames, and then stomping down on it into ash. Musically, they’re kindred spirits to the rascally pop of the Alley Cats (they cover “Nothing Means Nothing Anymore”) and a more raspy Bitch School. Come to think of it, Alicja reminds me of Joan Jett, if Joan Jett got 1/100th of the notoriety she deserved, was born, bred, and had Memphis dirt under her fingernails, and then was forced to do it all DIY almost completely under the radar. Great stuff.

 –todd (Dirtnap)