Tag Archives: White Stripes

Under The Radar: The Shys

Most bands get all sorts of undeserved comparative hype. While I am usually guilty of “sounds like” relationships in my reviews, I feel that without them it would be more difficult to communicate the specific sound or direction of the band (if limited to more general terms). But I am flooded with press releases that make such outlandish comparisons that they are merely laughable. The new variation on that theme is to be so patently obscure in your references to appear hip. But the downside of that is communicating so little worthwhile information that the bio is of no use whatsoever.

But you have to admit that a band billed like this is worth a listen:

“California’s Shys are a blistering four-piece featuring Iggy style vox and hints of all the Stones: the Rolling Stones, Stone Roses, and Sly And The Family Stone.”

I really liked this album, as well as their follow-up You’ll Never Understand This Band The Way I Do. I’ll save the references for that one for another time, but here’s my review of Astoria from Pop Culture Press in 2007:

The opening track “Never Gonna Die” kicks off with a blast of ringing guitars and Keith Moon-like drums, transporting the listener to England circa 1977. But although a comparison to the melodic pub punk of bands like The Boys wouldn’t be out of line, these sounds are being made by a band in their early twenties…from California? Vocalist Kyle Krone wraps his throaty Iggy vocals around an album full of strong material, albeit heavily influenced by a myriad of other bands.

“Call in the Cavalry” brazenly swipes a riff and drumbeat from the White Stripes but grows it from there, ditto “Alive Transmission” (“Search and Destroy” meets “Undercover of the Night”) and the Ian Hunter drenched “Waiting on the Sun”. The title track is a Clash-like stomp that builds and recedes like a violent tide. And while they may cop some modern bands, the guitar work is steeped in seventies rock, which makes tracks like “The Resistance” much more than a nod to Oasis. A very, very strong debut.

Listen to clips at Amazon.

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NEW ALBUM! The Datsuns

Calm down, gebts - that's not what you think it means.

Easy, gents - that doesn't mean what you think.

Fourth album from the New Zealand rockers, and thank god some of the young pups are breathing some fire into their rock’n’roll. Earlier this decade they shot out of a cannon with their debut record, caught up in the feeding frenzy when Jet, The Hives, The Strokes and The White Stripes and other similar bands managed to infuse hard rock with garage chops and punk attitude and whet the appetites of the labels. With Led Zep’s John Paul Jones at the knobs for the followup, everyone expected worldwide domination.

Oops.

Sophomore slump be damned…Outta Sight Outta Mind wasn’t a bad record but seemed to douse whatever flames were lit beforehand. Soaked badly enough that their third album (Smoke &Mirrors) didn’t even register – many people thought they were two and done. So I guess this time around The Datsuns figured they’d torch the place.

Read my review of Headstunts in Blurt Magazine.

Wikipedia entry for The Datsuns.

Yeah Yeah, Just Another Mistake“, live in March 2009.

No way this song gets on morning radio. But props for covering The Ramones.

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