I’m a big fan of Jeff Dahl, The Angry Samoans, Powertrip and a few other early 80’s So Cal HC bands. I only ever listen to punk bands that have integrity or roots – or both. LA’s False Alarm qualify on both counts, and one listen to this split 7” attests in uncertain terms that they are the real deal. False Alarm existed for a short couple of years back in 82/83, then regrouped again some 15 years later. Fat Mike (later of NOFX) was in an early incarnation of the band. Enough history. This split 7” (with another LA band Youth Gone Mad) was released a couple of years ago on the bands own label and it’s well worth the effort to track down a copy. False Alarm offer up ‘Tell Me Who I Am’, a brooding yet melodic tune that is archetypal punk rock and reminded me a lot of Peter Laughner and Cheetah Chrome’s classic ‘Ain’t It Fun’. The fact that Cheetah plays lead guitar on this tune is really the icing on the cake. Cheetah’s playing and his tone in particular is so solid and distinctive. This song wouldn’t have sounded out of place on the Dead Boys ‘We Have Come For Your Children’ LP and is as good as anything you’ll hear nowadays that falls under the ‘punk’ banner. There’s a raw, unpolished quality here that makes this tune an out and out old school punk rock classic. Raspy and real vocals too. Cheetah thinks a lot of these guys too, and as well as playing on one of their previous CDs has stated, “I really think they are a great band in the Social Distortion vein, with intelligent lyrics written by guys who have lived the hell they sing about. They have more heart and talent than anybody I’ve heard in a long, long, time.” The flip side features a tune by LA’s Youth Gone Mad called ‘Frogman From Mars’ which, whilst not as immediate as the False Alarm tune, is not that dissimilar. The guitars are distorted nicely and tuned down and set to an almost swing beat. With it’s humorous lyrical content it kicks major ass. You could do a hell of a lot worse than hipping yourself to False Alarm. Check out the bands MySpace page here or email Brent here and he’ll tell you where you can buy the record or the bands other stuff. 10 out of 10. Buy some REAL punk rock kids.