|Who's Your Daddies? - Chrome Daddies
Chrome Daddies 001, 2002
First time I played this new Chrome Daddies CD I felt something was missing. I still had their last years' debut album fresh in my memory, and this sounds different. I had no idea at the time what it was that had changed, so I played their first album again, then played this one right after. Yep, the fifties feel has gone. Looking at the cover I noticed that the band changed the vintage Preston studios for The White Room Recording Studio. I don't know anything about this studio, but it doesn't produce that distinctive Preston sound on this release, that's for sure.
Looks like the Chrome Daddies had a change in their line-up too since their debut album. Bass player Jon Flynn has been replaced by Antonio Chico Lopez. I don't know the story behind this, because this CD just fell on my doormat without any additional information, but first impressions are that Chico does a pretty good job, and he's not the one that causes the change in sound.
The CD hits off with a slow bopper "I'd Like To Get To Know Your Name". The bass is very deep, maybe a little bit too deep. If you usually play fifties records, you will have to turn it down a bit. Stuart's scorchy guitar still sounds real good on this self-penned track though. The band changes tune to a country song titled "Just The Same" without much spark. "Virginia Belle" is more exciting, and catches some of the original rawness, but it's not true rockabilly. I think I would rather call it country-rock. More country on the ballad "Drinkin' My Heart In Two" and the cover "Spin My Wheels" has too many rock influences for rockabilly purists.
"I'm Not Happy" is a song with the old rockabilly rhythm, but with a lot of slide guitar, and the uptempo "No News Is Good News" definitly shows that the band has chosen to wander off the rockabilly path and take the dirt road to a seventies kind of country rock music. "Drive For A Livin'" is kind of a trucker song and a long way from rock 'n' roll. "Little Joe From Chicago" rocks, but it's flooded with steel guitar and country-rock lead breaks and I'm equally unimpressed by "The **** Song" and "Honky Tonk Night Time Man".
Tracks 12 to 15 were recorded live in Adelaide, October 2001, and it seems the band still does some rockabilly music live on stage with "No Mercy For Swine", followed by George Jones' "Race Is On", which is not rockabilly at all. The "T For Texas" medley is a welcome change of pace towards the blues followed by the last track, Bo Diddley's beautiful "Dearest Darlin'", which was also on the debut release.
For the lovers of a more modern country-rock sound, I guess this is still a pretty good album, but for me, the hardcore fifties rockabilly bopper, it's a big step down from their first release. No shivers down my spine, like on that marvellous "8 Ball", sorry guys...
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Reviewed by The BlackCat, 2002