Alternative music reviews

October 3, 2005

Stuff Yer Turkey by Fire Rocket Launcher

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Now this album is a jolt in the arm – enthusiastically played “punk-metal” Xmas covers. Despite being only October and Xmas a (not so) distant event, Fire Rocket Launcher have laid down ten damn fine cover versions of family favourites like ‘Jingle Bells’ and ‘We Wish You A Merry Christmas’. There is so much energy in the musicianship with what could be a Lemmy impersonator spiting out the once clean-cut lyrics in tightly constructed songs lasting less than 3 minutes, in fact, the whole album flashes past in an all too brief 24 minutes. With a band comprising of Axle Grease – vocals, Ed Lamp – lead guitar, Johnny Chords – guitar, Fast Eddie – drums and Ors Power – bass, it’s fair to say Rocket Launcher are not taking this lark seriously. Highlights are an over the top ‘Deck The Halls’ with mischievous backing vocals and chug, chug, chugging chords along with a fairly faithful rendition of ‘Jingle Bells’ which works surprisingly well as speedy punk song which you could imagine The Ramones pulling off. This is not 100% Xmas festivity mind, the last two covers – ‘The Hokey Cokey’ and ‘The Conga’ are even more moronic yet still great fun for blaring out big speakers at a drunken party. Each song is given the same treatment no matter the song, the band use with the same distortion pedal setting and the drummer pounds away regardless of the song content. Axle Grease keeps the same vocal range, which somehow works out, giving a single bloody minded approach to performing this well-known classics.

It’s enjoyable, initial fun with plenty of entertainment value. Long term, these songs could get distracting and eventually annoying although when a band like Me First And The Gimmie Gimmies attempted a similar exercise with their punk re-workings of pop songs veering wildly from Barry Manilow to Wizard Of Oz, it turned out successful, so I can’t see why Fire Rocket Launcher can’t create a minor buzz amongst rock fans with this clutch of festive fun tracks.

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