TOMMY & THE COMMIES: Here Come…: CD

Those familiar with the scene in the Northern Canadian city of Sudbury, Ontario, Canada would have at some point—one way or another—come across the Houle brothers. Jeff and Mitch have been at it for years, and are most certainly the jewel of “the big nickel” (Sudbury is traditionally a mining town). Being with Statues, Strange Attractor, Mick Futures, Varge and now the topical Tommy And The Commies, these two can interchange between instruments and nail each of them flawlessly. Now backing Tommy, with Jeff on bass/vox and Mitch on drums, it seems like a match made in heaven. Something about this current project just works. Originally a four piece, they’ve now paired it down to three, which somehow seems to work even better. Here Come…, not unlike the Statues records, is heavily U.K.-influenced. These eight tunes have a very specific Jam/Buzzcocks sound to them, and most importantly, is far from anything cliché or corny. Which, it’s important to note, is extremely difficult to do when attacking this sound, so credit given when due. The production isn’t intentionally über vintage sounding, but is thin enough and clean enough where it suits the sound just right. “Hurtin’ Boys” and “Permanent Fixture” are the current tracks that seem to be in my head most frequently, but there isn’t anything close to a dud here. I could go on, but I won’t. Heavy contender for the record of the year. –Steve Adamyk (Slovenly, slovenly.com)