by Ewan Wadharmi
A generation of boys with gooey, blistered fingers mourn the time when Mattel took the waffle iron filled with rubber off the market. Thingmaker brings back that time in the ’70s and ’80s when you raced BMX bikes and AMX cars.
NRA and New Bomb Turks lead the punk pack in visceral throwback punk. The Wildhearts power up a Cheap Trick/Bay City Rollers fusion. News from the garage front comes from The Dragons and Turbo AC’s. While a slew of “Scandalnavian” bands prove once again they know our pop culture better than we do. Mensen, The Hives, and The Hellacopters each have a flavor as memorable as Space Food Sticks. As unusual as The Hypnomen‘s house party “Shake” is, it can be the jewel in the crown or the fly in the ointment. It’s a great tune that begs to be surrounded by brethren tracks. Here it sticks out like an afro on a white dude (or Angfro). Other than this anomaly, Thingmaker is as consistently exciting as perfectly-formed Creepy Crawlers.
Toys like Shrunken Apple Heads and Easy Bake Oven were as fun and dangerous as Riverboat Gamblers, “Demons”, Nomads, and Million Dollar Marxists. Gearhead even includes a boss vintage commercial for the torture device that prepared us for the pain of tattoos.