|Homenaje a Stray Cats (A Tribute to the Stray Cats)|
Skinny Records SKCD-6940
Yes, it sureley was The Stray Cats who brought rockabilly back into the charts in the early 80s, starting with "Runaway Boys" in November 1980, immediatly followed by "Rock This Town" and "Stray Cat Strut". Their first album, produced by Dave Edmunds, also hit the charts, reaching #6 in March 1981. The Stray Cats had quite an impact on the rockabilly scene in those days, and they got a new generation interested in the true sound of 50s rockabilly. Before the Stray Cats, kids of the era had never heard of Gene Vincent and Eddie Cochran, but that al changed very soon. Brian Setzer, Slim Jim Phantom and Lee Rocker were famous over night, and they are all still rocking on their own accord today.
Now, over 20 years later, everybody still remembers the Stray Cats, and for many rockers and rockettes of the revival generation, they were the first rockabilly band they ever heard. Therefor I think it's a pretty good idea from Skinny Records (Spain) to pay tribute to these rockabilly legends. "Homenaje a Stray Cats" is a pretty cool, and yet super hot homage to the cats of the 80s. Twelve well and lesser known Spanish bands are presenting 16 songs that were once performed by the Stray Cats, many written by Setzer, Rocker and Phantom. Also included are Gene Vincent's "Double talking Baby" and The Paine Brothers' "Gina", both of course were covered by the Stray Cats, and especially "Gina" has long time been considered one of the best covers ever. On this album the Massapequa Trio's version of this all time great song can't be compared with Dave Edmunds production of 1989, but it's nice to hear the song revived again in Stray Cats style.
The bands play all (mostly well known) songs with a lot of respect for the original Stray Cat sound, many have added a little something of their own, all are certainly very enthusiastic and the overall sound is is pretty darn good. I sure hope this album will get some more attention world wide, because it really deserves it, and maybe it can interest yet a another new generation in rockabilly music, the way the Stray Cats did in the 80s. Go for it!
Skinny Records S.L.
Reviewed by The BlackCat, 2002