The Blakes


Lights up on a surfer dropping in on a perfect wave. With the camera mounted atop the sunkist shoulders of this gifted wave runner, we together glide through a salt water tube of crystal blue. Oh hello, where was I, ah yes, listening to Seattle stoned in the garage rockers The Blakes, who don't rip off their influences (The Smiths, Murder City Devils, and Kings Of Leon) as pay tribute to their esteemed mentors by implementing bold chord changes, album tempo variations, and all around defiance of being labeled something other than a basement-blues-rock-cult bred in the Pacific Northwest.


The whole crash of the record vibes on shitty haircuts in snug Wrangler jeans tucked neatly into an expensive pair of Alligator boots, with a wash of groovy lines, crusty guitars, and gritty vocal lashes.

"Don't Bother Me," which I imagined as a groovy replica of the Bad Brains anthem, is about climbing up into the warm loins of a horny someone, 'Don't Bother Me, I'm caught up in your legs I don't want to get out.' Hello parental guidance. My man Garnet loves his old lady's down there so much that he wrote a song about doing her down there area, where he obviously loves it so much.

Although Sopranos creator David Chase vehemently denies trying to "stir up the senses" of his audience, The Blakes succeed like true champs by including "Lintrock," a Big Country type fizzle, that makes me ask, 'uh, where the hell did all of the rock go Beavis?

Buttheads in the band answer the question with "Lie Next To Me," a kinky spank that Ratt from Fast Times At Ridgemont High should have played instead of Zeppelin Four as he was told. This bold thrust of sexiness is just a tad or a nad more erogenous than Panthers, although maybe not as experienced as Death From Above 1979, brimming like hell as the showoff star in this cluttered galaxy.

Just when I began to eject the record, the four-minute killer closer "Streets," longest prick in the half hour pack, comes tearing down that smooth barrel of crystal blue, like a wave you might have surfed on or dreamed of once before. As the backwash of screeching guitars thrashed and shiny bells chimed and shook, I imagined Iggy Pop beating the goodness out of some Salvation Army volunteer asking for money in front of a Detroit supermarket on a bitter December night.

Look for a possible reissue of this very same record on the Seattle based label Light In The Attic (The Black Angels, The Saturday Knights) sometime this summer...gnarly dude.

"Don't Bother Me"





"Streets"





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The Blakes