Yeah, so I’m late with this, to the tune of five days, but that’s still a better time than what Eugene and especially Jon have made on this list. Nanny nanny boo boo. Oh, and if you didn’t read my blog from yesterday (shame on you!), I got last week’s (okay the week before’s) entry on vinyl because I absolutely dug the crap out of it! Let’s do this one:
#40 – Young Man’s Blues by Rock City Angels.
Forty! Wow, that’s a long way to come. Most of them have been good, some of them great, some of them not great. This one falls in the “good” category, I’d say. It’s not great, by any means but it’s decent. I will admit, and it goes with the reason this post is late, that I could only give it about four listens and only about three really good listens.
I had never heard of Rock City Angels. They really got nowhere as far as national recognition goes. Probably their biggest claim to fame is that Johnny Depp played with them before he signed on to star in 21 Jump Street. That being said, he was only there briefly and he was one of, get this, 39 different former band members. Yes. THIRTY-NINE! They started in South Florida in the mid-80s, as a punk band, and moved to Los Angeles to record for Geffen and other labels while becoming known on the LA club/venue circuit well into the 90s.
I listen to it and all I can think of is Adam Sandler/Jack Russell (from Great White) is singing. That’s because to me, Bobby Bondage/Bobby St. Valentine/Bobby Durango sounds like a mix of the two. There are times on this album, as well, that he seems a bit out of key, or at least shaky. “Our Little Secret” and “Ya Gotta Swear” are examples of that. He’s a good singer, he just seems a bit strained at times, but that was the thing back in 1988, I’d say. The funny thing is that when the band sounds like Great White is when BStVD sounds the most like Sandler. Unfortunately, BStVD passed away in 2012.
There are some good riffs on the album, too. I’m just not a fan of that sleazy LA sound, mostly. I prefer the slower songs, truthfully. Mike Barnes and Doug Banx hold down the guitar work, bluesy, rocking or otherwise and have a good tone that also fits the sound of the times. Andy Panik’s bass lines are tasteful and not overly riffy. He plays his parts very well and his tone is great, albeit a bit in the background. Jackie D. Jukes has some monstrous drum runs and fills and his drum sound is definitely indicative of that LA sound.
Overall, it’s just not my thing. It’s not something that I’d want to listen to again. There are moments, as I said, but I think 15 songs is way more than was needed. It was a double album. They could have gotten away with 8-10. I’d be happy to drop some filler and keep “Deep Inside My Heart,” “Hard to Hold,” “Ya Gotta Swear,” “Rough ‘N’ Tumble,” “Shout of the Border” and perhaps “Mary” which was supposed to have been co-written by Depp as well as a few others. I’d say those were the ones I liked the most.
Eug, not my favorite thing you’ve given us but I do appreciate the opportunity to hear it. I’d have probably never heard it had you not assigned it. I rate it as decent but overall, there’s much more to choose from. I just couldn’t get into it.
Until tomorrow, same blog channel…
“She’s got a ruby ring, sparkles at a glance. See the man downtown ya know he always loves ta make ya (dance). It’s an adolescent romance and it’s tearin’ up the charts deep inside my heart.” – “Deep Inside My Heart” (Rock City Angels)