Hard Reviews 4
by Martin Popoff

Drunk Horse - Tanning Salon/Biblical Proportions
(Man's Ruin)

Once past the tommyrot rip-off cheek of calling this things two concept albums on one disc (it's 36 minutes long, chump), one can sidle into the '74 Dodge Dart of it all, Drunk Horse continuing their past-cool groove through Giant Sand, Royal Trux, Mondo Generator, James Gang, Weezer, Good Rats, Rose Tattoo, BTO, Presidents Of The United States Of America and Queens Of The Stone Age into a skeletal stoner zone that is a mop-top soft-top junk culture blast-o-matic. Bluesy, trashy, olden, beholden and mellowed like rarified Southern rotgut, this one coughs up a chuckly event a minute, power-chorded at times like the hapless try-hard of Sloan, other times like the sucked-dry prod. values of British punk circa early '77. It's all calibrated to shirk work and regress into teenland basementland with ears ringing, anthems singin'... Bottom line: compressed and modest banana seat rock sent to swirl and orbit the magic heart of a guy's first rock 'n' roll epiphany.
Rating 7.5

Various Artists - A Tribute To Bon Jovi: Covered Dead Or Alive

I find it hard to listen to Bon Jovi in its original abysmal glory let alone under covers. In any event, this typical hair band-ish tribute from Deadline heavies things up, basic tracks played by three Warrant guys, James Kottak (Kingdom Come, Scorpions) on drums and a ripping lead guitarist named DJ Ashba (beats me). O'er top there are things that make me want to cry, well, two things: Jizzy Pearl and Kory Clarke singing Bon Jovi songs. Jizzy, that's just a disappointment, first L.A. Guns, then Ratt, then Bon Jovi covers. There wasn't a better band in the '90s than Love/Hate. You dope. But Kory, usually up to here with ideals, man, that just ain't right. I mean, Jizzy's life... it sort of at least makes wry sense in an O.J.'s not guilty, let's not count the votes world. But Kory, I don't even see how that can happen. Still good to hear that "Chaz" from Jason Bonham's band is still scraping by in a blaze of glory, living in sin, livin' on a prayer... he's there for us givin' love a bad name. Can't believe I'm writing this and you're reading it, but these versions at least don't pooch; they're recorded all right, and these songs are hooky, and of course improved without ol' challenged lungs singin' 'em, even if some of these guys aren't exactly precise either. Wot, and they're all fans?!
Rating 6

Hard Reviews Page 5