TERMINALS, THE: Forget About Never: CD

May 10, 2007

This album conjures up that scene in the Blues Brothers where Jake and Elwood go to the church where James Browns has that huge gospel/blues musical number going on. Take that scene and change the band to a genuinely unique garage punk band playing guitar, drums, and organ, and then record the whole tumultuous shebang they raise into what sounds like two microphones that are so overloaded and distorted that all the recording levels are securely in the red. That describes about 3/4s of the album. The mellower numbers on the album tend to sound like slower 45 Graves songs but less hokey (probably due to both bands using spooky organ and having female vocalists more than anything else). This is perhaps the dirtiest, most spazzed-out sounding recording that one is ever likely to encounter outside of a Locust album, but it really works to give everything a unique and urgent gritty rock’n’roll soul feel instead of making everything muddy or headache-inducing. The vocals really make this album. While the male vocals hold their own in the songs they take lead on, it’s the female vocals (I’m guessing they belong to Liz Hitt) that really kick ass because they have that low, in-control Aretha Franklin quality that can be up-beat and aggressive like on “Wild Bill’s Social Club” and the cover of “Liar Liar,” to beautifully soulful like on the track “Ride.” These, incidentally, are my favorite tracks on the album, along with the closer “(She’s Gone) Popcorn.” Highly recommended.

 –Adrian (Dead Beat)