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A lot of boom, a little swagger, maybe some piss, how about some vinegar? Who knows the exact formula for great rock 'n' roll, especially in this year 2002, when insipid pop and date rapist rap metal rules the schools?

Then you hear a band like the Retreads, writing some tougher than leather rock songs, and you realize there is hope left in this dim world. Need you even ask? All the young dudes have gotten older, a little wiser and have, dare I say, come into their own. The combat boots are strapped, the axes are in hand and they have entered the war against all that is wrong with the current state of music.

Listening to the group's latest collection of songs, it's pretty easy to tell what these four have been up to for the last couple seemingly unproductive years. Digging deeper into rock music's roots - be it the self-destructive bombast of the Stooges, the booze-drenched strut of "Exile" era Stones, the thunder of AC/DC - this band of early 20-somethings certainly has a better grasp on rock music than the shit-for-brains rejects comprising their generation.

Tongue firmly implanted in their cheeks and yours, our heroes Mike, Scottie, Jon and Carl are more than prepared to rock your ass into oblivion. They plan to. Give a listen to tunes like "Live at Budokan" and "Doin' It For The Dudes" and try to convince me that these kids don't mean business. The frenetic beat and wild riffing of "Highway To Helsinki" coupled with the depressive dirge and serene beauty of "I Quit" should sell even the toughest critic and hardened listener. They've arrived...and they're not taking prisoners.

Forget that this band has been doing it for nearly seven years, has records on quite a few independent labels and has played shows with your favorite punk rock bands. Forget the turbulent times, as the newly solidified line-up shows they aren't going anywhere but up. Forget everything you know, because your reeducation is about to begin.

Rock 'n' roll needs a few more great bands, and the Retreads are here to do their part in filling the void. Beer-fueled rock 'n' roll orgies have indeed never sounded this good; kids, let me be the first to tell you to tip your hat to the Blue Ribbon Rock.



2002 The Retreads. All Rights Ignored. Questions specifically related to the website can be sent to webmaster@theretreads.com.