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CD Review: The Coffin Lids – Round Midnight

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I was lying in the gutter the other day having first been kicked out of the local grocery for what they called attempting to set the lobsters free before embarking on a three day super bender of sorts that left me feeling like Bruce Banner after a Hulk comedown when I heard somebody walking by say “The Coffin Lids are ready” and damn if I didn’t feel a twinge of something strange infecting my bones that felt worse than that time I decided to give that weird taco stand a chance and while it took some time to figure it out I eventually came to the conclusion that it was an emotion known as fear. The confusion that followed is difficult to relate, but after some events involving a public park, a crafts fair, some mimes that came to a bad end, several trips to my favorite package store, a midnight screening of Two Lane Blacktop, and something that involved tokens and 3D glasses when I finally realized that the coffin lids in question weren’t for me, but were for everybody. Because The Coffin Lids are just a kickass rock and roll band from Boston and they’ve just released a new album, Round Midnight, on the mighty Bomp label.

Hell, I thought; I bet I have the album on my CD player right now. Once I managed to remember where I was flopping and once I managed to bum a ride there I discovered that Round Midnight was indeed on my player. It was even on repeat. If I’d had glass in my windows they would have been rattling because that little boombox I found was generating some sonic reverberations of the sort that Chuck Yeager would have liked. I’m talking boom daddy. Damien’s drums are worthy of one named after a devil child. Coffin Jaye Toothake lends his mellifluous primal screams to the top of his bass. Skinny “Coffin” Mike sings lead and plays some damage guitar. I think he might have made a fine member of Sha Na Na. He would have been the one kicking people’s heads in when they made fun of Fifties rock and roll.

Those familiar with The Coffin Lids are now scratching their heads and wondering about that Fifties reference. Everybody knows that The Coffin Lids are a slamming garage punk monster of a group; a mixture of the best of Sixties and Seventies rock. Yeah, yeah that stuff’s in there with thunderous good results, but there’s a dose of Fifties greaser slithering around too. Put it this way, there’s no way you’d ever find The Coffin Lids playing a dance for the socials.

Another thing to love about The Coffin Lids is the fun song titles. There’s “Frankenstein” even if Edgar Winter beat them to it, “Teenage Shakedown”, “Mad Party”, “Creepy Crawl” even if Black Flag was borrowing that bit from Charlie Manson years ago for some funny radio commercials, and “Tonight You’re Going To Die In My Garage” that sound as cool as their titles. It’s adrenalized bull elephant killing kind of music. Zack Brines contributes some tasty farfisa to several of the tracks on Round Midnight for some requisite Mysterian style menace. A reverent cover of The Lime Spiders’ “Slave Girl” is thrown into the mix and it could be a damn near life changing experience for some perhaps. The biggest winner is “Action” which would make a great theme song.

Round Midnight is raucous, rebellious, and relentless. Those are three of the prime ingredients that make for good rock and roll. So join me in getting out of the gutter, because the The Coffin Lids are ready.

Edited:CMP

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