Kevin K / Lester And The Landslide Ladies – Frantic Tales For The Fast Living’ (Split CD)
As the old saying goes, you just can’t keep a good man down – and after listening to this new split CD from Kevin K and Lester & The Landslide Ladies, the great Kevin K is still crafting top notch melodic punk rock ‘n’ roll better than all the rest. Tired he might be after 35 years at the rock ‘n’ roll game, these 6 new Kevin K tunes firmly attest it ain’t time to put down the old yellow Gibson Jr. just yet. What you get on this split CD are six tunes from KK and six from Italy’s Lester & The Landslide Ladies. New Kevin K rock ‘n’ roll is always cause for rejoicing, and of these new half dozen tunes, there’s much to like. It’s all 77’ era punkisms on ‘Too Much Too Soon’, which lyrically tells the story of the Dolls demise. This is a killer tune and would sound great live. There’s a likeable reworking of the Road Vultures ‘La Vida Loca’ and a choice cover of Katy Perry’s ‘Teenage Dream’ which with a harder guitar edge to it, sounds much better than the original! This tune also features Florida’s legendary blues man Old Man Crack on harmonica and chorus vocals. At 85 years young, Old Man Crack is still out there showing the younguns’ how it’s done. I have written thousands of words about Kevin K over the years – yet at times am still lost for superlatives to describe how good his brand of rock n roll is. Which brings me to my two favourite Kevin K tunes on this CD. ‘Crazy Squeeze’ and ‘If I’m Alive’. ‘Crazy Squeeze’ is aces all the way. Likeable vocals, a big, catchy and distinct chorus. No one plays mid tempo melodic rock ‘n’ roll better than Kevin K – and in my mind, there never will be. This tune is as good as anything he’s done – and illustrates perfectly the KK signature sound. With its melancholy vibe, ‘If I’m Alive’ is lyrically provocative but further evidence of Kevin K’s ability to craft memorable tunes. At times it’s downbeat, but is balanced with pleasant femme vocals courtesy of Natty Moss Bond. So for the KK tunes on this CD, I give a definite Fonzie thumbs up. There are also six tunes from Modena, Italy’s finest – Lester & The Landslide Ladies. These guys have been around since 2002 and ply a hybrid brand of early glam rock, 70’s era Brit punk, and power pop. The result is a sound of infectious, high energy punk. These guys have played over 600 European show and played with the Dolls, Backyard Babies, Vibrators, Cockney Rejects, Sham 69, Angelic Upstarts, Hanoi Rocks, U.S. Bombs and a stack more. The first thing you notice is how much energy/passion these guys have for rock n roll! ‘F**k Me Mommy’ is a great album opener, three minutes of infectious, catchy and melodic pop punk. ‘I Don’t Wanna Be With You’ is another slice of catchy pop punk, as is ‘Cherry Stitches’. Sheesh, all six tunes here are GREAT! Whilst the sound ain’t exactly original, it’s certainly not derivative and it’s rooted in the right kinda rock ‘n’ roll, and for me, that’s AOK. I can also hear elements of Duane Peters or Social Distortion here, particularly in Lester’s vocals, yet comparisons aside, these guys are creating great punk rock ‘n’ roll with a capital F for FUN! All up – this is a great CD and a no risk buy! You can buy this CD online from Tornado Ride Records.
Check out this recent video of Old Man Crack and Kevin K as they carve up Katy Perry’s ‘Teenage Dream’.