Dirty Looks Cool From the Wire (1988) and mail -ordered by me from ST Records in Dudley (note for younger readers – mail ordering stuff was just like buying stuff on the internet, but without a PC). I bought this because Tommy Vance kept playing ‘Oh Ruby’ by them on the Friday Rock Show – the only outlet on the BBC for hard rock and metal at the time. ‘Oh Ruby’ was, and still is, brilliant – a real blast about some hot, mean-hearted, sex-machine of a rock chick – just like the ones I used to imagine. the fact that it sounded identical to my favourite Australian band was no bad thing as I was rapidly running out of AC/DC songs to hear for the first time, so it did a job.
And therin lies the rub. I remember quite liking this LP at the time, particularly ‘Oh Ruby’, ‘Cool From the Wire’ and ‘Get Off’, but there just wasn’t a second of originality on the whole LP. Now, even today that’s not necessarily a bar to me enjoying something if its done entertainingly enough and what I found listening to this LP again was it does sound good. I had it on in the background when I was reading and goofing about on my mobile. However, a bit like a former trophy wife, the closer you look the ropier it is. It really does not stand any close scrutiny at all.
Particularly the lyrics. Now regular readers (blogees and blogettes ?) will know my strictly held policy of never quoting lyrics out-of-context, particularly when the offending band may not be singing in their native tongue, purely for humorous reasons. To paraphrase Thomas Jefferson, ‘I would never let any band lay me so low’, in fact I believe principles like that are what separate us from the animals.
‘She Maserati gots the speed / get you any place you need’ (Oh Ruby)
‘We have such a fine time / Yes I know we could / Slip off your knickers you look so good’ (Get off)
‘I am heavy like a Chevy / You don’t know it you wont blow it’ (Put a Spell on You)
Okay, so Charge of the Light Brigade (or even Misplaced Childhood) it ain’t, but I am wilfully missing the point here for comic purposes. This is a solid LP, that sounds fine in the background and doesn’t stand up to forensic analysis – that’s a damn sight better than quite a few I’ve got and I would point out a damn sight better than any I’ve ever made, myself.
I will confess as well that I do have a soft spot for bands who print where the lead guitar break is on the lyric sheets in their LPs, I think it shows a proper sense of priorities.