Devil In The Details (CMC)
by Chaz Thorndike
I seem blessed/cursed to get most of the post-cheese metal that comes into what passes for Lollipop Corporate Headquarters. Most of these are tucked aside in discreetly unmarked envelopes with “Chaz” hastily scribbled at the top. After winning a “Best-Out-Of-A-Few-Million” thumb wrestling match with the Editor (boy does he hate to lose!), I have the “privilege” of frothing about post-’80s glam/cheese/metal/cock rock. I’ve also learned that having opposable thumbs is definitely a perk and deserves all the evolutionary hype it gets. (Of course, the Ace™ Bandage I currently wear is a great way to meet chicks.) So without further ado, my review of Saigon Kick.
Grudgingly, I kinda like ’em. As a card-carrying critic, it’s usually my self-appointed crusade to insult the shit out of anything that doesn’t take the genre to new heights or depths. While I’m still undecided as to why Saigon Kick is “better” than the rest of the filler out there, I think it is. It’s kinda like hot dogs – all the ingredients are pretty gross, but the overall combination is tasty. Devil In The Details is about as innovative as a “new and improved” laundry detergent. A subtle change in the mixture here, a clever marketing campaign there, and it does the exact same fucking thing. This is rock. Sounds a lot like what little Extreme I’ve been subjected to, living in Boston and all. That overly harmonized, I’ve-got-a-great-range vibrato rock voice – oh, how new! Fretboard flying, solos for the sake of solos, superchunk powerchords, and all that cock rock guitar virtuoso masturbation. Styles range from blues to ballads to swing to swagger to strut to an a cappella pretty-boy-barbershop intro to a total NIN rip-off rhythm (resplendent with tribal percussion) with gyrating guitars and showy vocals. Pianos, keys, Spanish guitars, samba percussion, and just about any other gawdy knick-knack they could throw in to try to sound as musically diverse as humanly possible.
As always, CMC International has saved another rock band from going the way of the dodo, for better or worse. Time to pull out those shredded, too-tight jeans, put on them cowboy boots littered with buckles, straps, and belts, throw on some medieval-looking shirt beneath that stickered/painted/spiked/chained black leather and strut the malls in search of chicks. You’re never too old to rock ‘n’ roll.