The Cramps - Songs The Lord Taught Us - Review
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critics' view

A bass-less Rock n Roll horror show from the NYC quartet, an oft-forgotten offspring of CBGB’s. The debut Cramps set was produced by Alex Chilton and aptly recorded in Memphis at Phillips Recording, operated by former Sun Records label owner Sam Phillips. The sound was lo-fi – dirty and raw, but passionate and intense. Rockabilly was reinvented right here as psychobilly , borne of the charismatic lunacy of front man Lux Interior and his band, who nailed down an irresistible new template which would be aped to death from hereon. Opener “T.V. Set” is completely terrific – these garage cats are primitive, that’s how they live. The prowling, unhinged “I Was A Teenage Werewolf” is the album highlight – like a menacing Gene Vincent fronting up Link Wray’s bad-ass hombres. In all, 8 originals are offered up with 5 covers; “Rock On The Moon” (Jimmy Stewart, 1959), “Sunglasses After Dark” (based on "Ace Of Spades" Link Wray, 1962), “Strychnine” (The Sonics, 1965), “Tear It Up” (Johnny Burnette and The Rock n Roll Trio, 1956) and “Fever” (Little Willie John, 1956). Rock n Roll is back; in its new psychobilly guise it seems sexier and more dangerous than ever before…

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