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You have to love a band where someone plays “fuzz”. But then two drummers could go horribly wrong. In the case of the Dirtbombs though, it is oh so right.

My introduction was Ultraglide In Black. To me that album is damn near perfect. I really dig their other albums, but that is just awesome. Even friends of mine that don’t care one way or the other for the Dirtbombs really dig that album. Dangerous Magical Noise had some amazing songs on it too, but as a whole album had a couple tracks that just didn’t do it for me. And so we come to We Have You Surrounded.

A concept album apparently about “dystopian” society, it is still 100% Dirtbombs. And I reckon it is in the Dangerous Magical Noise category. There are some awesome tracks on here. Opener It’s No Fun Until The See You Cry is a cracker, as are Ever Lovin’ Man and Indivisible. But then you get the odd track like Sherlock Holmes that is just OK. The LP then ebbs and flows in the same way… a few tracks of gold, then one just OK.

But ultimately even so-so Dirtbombs is better than 99% of anything else, so there is no question you shouldn’t go out there and buy it. So get it, turn it up, and rock out shades-on, Mick Collins style. You just may want to skip the 8 minutes of noise that is Race To The Bottom.

And now we come to the gig. The Dirtbombs are acknowledged as one of the best live acts out there, and you can’t doubt it when you see them. The twin drum attack is awesome live and the bass-fuzz mix is great… that band is super sweet. But Mick steals the show. He is just the man really. It was a nice mix of the new album with the old chestnuts mentioned above, along with some Horndog Fest and other miscellaneous singles, and was another typical energetic Dirtbombs set. They have really just nailed the garage-soul mix. Live they effortlessly switch from raucous to soul to pop and obviously garage. They have such a wealth of great material that it doesn’t matter what they choose to do, it will be great fun.

Highlight for me was Underdog… the cheesy opening riff sending the crowd nuts. The encore of I Can’t Stop Thinking About It and Granny’s Little Chicken was sweet too. Most surreal moment though was their cover of the INXS classic Need You Tonight. To the slightly bemused crowd, Mick simply asked “What… you haven’t heard Oz Garage before?”. Gold. Catch them at their last show at the Evelyn before they head home on Monday 10th. Only 20 bucks at the door… the best $20 you will spend this month guaranteed.

… muttler

Oh, forgot to mention that Jay Reatard was on the bill too. What can you say? 20 songs in 30 minutes. I don’t know if I could have taken any more than that. Not that I didn’t love it… just everyone is spent by the end of his set. Crowd seemed a bit half-half with him. Pity, cause he grabs the essence of his great album Blood Visions and throws it in your face. Very cool.

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