Properly, little ones, I have experienced a small even though to hear to my favourite albums from 2011 above and about right up until I could choose just 1. Any individual who’s go through any of my other columns will most likely not be shocked by what I came up with it in all probability shouldn’t have taken me this very long to come out and just say it. For my cash, the greatest album recorded in the past yr (and some alter) is the self-titled debut from the Hard Ponys.
This album has been a very long time coming, possibly for a longer period than a lot of men and women comprehend. I saw this band engage in in the ’90’s on one of my a lot of visits to the S.F. Bay Region (below their authentic title, Flash Bastard, which has given that been made use of by a entirely unrelated band). I was blown absent, and bummed that they broke up before I received to see them a second time. All I had left of the team were being some flyers and a demo they recorded but (to the greatest of my expertise) by no means produced.
I stayed friends with the men over the years, and sometimes received the chance to see some of them perform in other bands now and then. So, you can imagine I was psyched to listen to they were heading to reunite for a pair of demonstrates in 2010, and even a lot more enthusiastic when they made the decision to begin a new band with each other and record an album. That band is the Really hard Ponys and their debut album is a mix of aged favorites from their Bastard days alongside with new tunes penned in the very last yr or so. This outdated admirer is not disappointed.
The album kicks off with “Psychodoll”, a monitor the band jokes is about the “joys of dating the clinically insane”. Any individual who’s at any time been in an emotional roller coaster of a marriage can relate to this just one, and the ideal portion is that, musically, the song feels like an actual roller coaster to generate household the metaphor. In some cases it is really exhilarating. From time to time it’s terrifying. Sometimes all you want to do is get off but you can’t. When you last but not least do, for some reason, you convert about and get ideal again on. The vocal drives house the reality that this lyric has been lived by. Adhering to up with “Down On You”, this is the identical one-two punch that starts off my well-worn cassette demo but shipped with much more ferocity if age has mellowed these boys, it won’t demonstrate in the new music. In truth, some of the trappings of the era they began off in have been discarded, leaving a truer impression of the band’s identification and a far more truthful seem.
I’m likely to try and prevent my typical impulse to go above every single observe one particular-by-one particular and let the audience learn the album for them selves, but I do want to address the highlights. A person of those people, for me, is the 3rd keep track of, which is the first new music on the album. “I Lied” is in all probability the a single new music most related to the band’s aged product: form of cross involving ’80’s Sunset Strip glam and ’70’s New York Punk (aspect notice: the Challenging Ponys’ guitar player was the man or woman who released me to the Lifeless Boys, the very first punk band I at any time truly liked aside from the Ramones). I didn’t comprehend this was a new one right until they explained to me, let us set it that way. So, this 1 establishes continuity concerning the outdated things and the new things. Fittingly, the keep track of alone is about the commercialization and co-opting of rock new music and how none of it matters if the music however moves you individually. It could definitely be a calling card of types for a band like the Hard Ponys.
“Mama’s Minimal Woman” is up subsequent, a live favored for the band and their enthusiasts. This is fast-paced, limited-but-loose, straight ahead rock n’ roll, and lyrically sort of the opposite of Madonna’s “Papa Will not Preach”, in that it suggests that heading by means of with a teenage being pregnant may well be some thing to imagine two times about. I did not assume twice about this track several years ago, but on hearing it yet again, the apparent message struck me as odd, so I asked Lance, their singer, about it. “Properly, I was contemplating selfishly when I wrote it,” he laughed, “I was young. I knew this woman that required to date me and I was on the fence about it. Then she explained to me that she had gotten knocked up by her ex and she was arranging to maintain it. That produced my intellect up really speedy. When I introduce the song these times, I joke that it’s not just professional-preference, it truly is pro-abortion. But it is really not really a political stance at all, it can be just a statement from me, as like a 21 or 22 year aged guy, that I failed to want to day any person who was heading to have anyone else’s child. I really did that a handful of many years later on, but at that age I wasn’t into it at all.”
Plenty of about the place the guys’ heads were at a long time ago. The upcoming track is one more new one, in truth the most recent song, penned just just before recording the album. This a person does mark a departure from the band’s conventional audio, nevertheless not as significantly as it may appear from the context of the album alone. It is really the only tune listed here that may be categorized as a ballad, and the Tricky Ponys have penned their share of ballads. “The Way This Tale Goes” is the only 1 that would make the album, on the other hand, and it does vary from prior ballads in a number of vital methods. It really is nearer to a little something amongst alt-region and southern rock, which can make perception since guitarist Danny Nolan spent some time taking part in bass for Americana band, the Del Bombers, and vocalist Lance Eason produced a Petty-ish, Black Crowes-y solo album in 2009 less than the name the Beast of England. The lyrics right here focus on folks who let them selves grow to be addicted to relationships with people today who are slaves to other addictions. Aside from “Psychodoll”, the future track, “Nothing But a Shadow”, is the 1st music on the album I would call a weighty metal tune. Slow, doomy, anchored by a very Black Sabbath-like guitar riff, this tune casts a definite mood.
Up following is “Dogs”, originally titled “Dog From Hell”, the 1st song the band ever wrote. This tune is the closest to a pure punk tune, nevertheless quite a few hard rock cliches are also trotted out (even though in a subtly tongue-in-cheek trend). In reside performances, this is the display-stopper for me and hits like a nuclear hurricane. It really is a minimal cleaner below but nevertheless ferocious. Damn it, I am going track-by-monitor but I can’t think of anything I want to skip. In any case, “Locked in the Dark”, another metal song, sort of “Nothing at all But a Shadow”‘s sister observe, delivers a little bit more heaviness and yet a little bit far more catchiness. The mid portion presents bassist Rob Rohde and drummer Jim Clenney a possibility to dig in and groove. “Probably That is the Way” delivers a little lighter touch, with nods to K.C. and the Sunshine Band in the lyrics (as with “Down On You” really). This would be a very radio-completely ready track in a unique era, apart from for it really is reasonably lengthy managing time.
“Trashin’ 139” is yet another straight rock ‘n’ roll track. If “Locked in the Dim” is “Nothing But a Shadow”‘s companion track, “Trashin’ 139” is “Mama’s Little Female”‘s. A pleasurable tale of stereotypical rock surplus and hotel trashing. Coming to just about the stop, “Home of Cards”, an additional more recent music, is the most legitimately new sounding to me. Some echoes of what would after have been known as “fashionable rock” or “different rock” mix with the heavier side of the Ponys’ palette. Which delivers us to “Hate”. I doubt many music are as uncomplicated in linking appreciate and loathe, however it can be a repeated subject in rock new music. The Difficult Ponys ordinarily finish with this tune, and they have opted to conclusion the album with it as effectively. You will find a very good rationale for that. At the time this song is accomplished, these men are spent.
So, that is that. Sorry to be so lengthy-winded, but I enjoy this album. I really like this band. I am just waiting to hear what they appear up with upcoming.