Terminal (Smog Veil)
by Iann Robinson
Like the ’70s bands Death and The Dogs, Pistol Whip is a long-lost treasure from an era when rock ‘n’ roll was just a solid kick to the scrotum. Though most of the credit for this era of rock is handed to The MC5 and The Stooges (rightfully so), there were bands that kicked out the jams and busted out with just as much raw power as those two.
Pistol Whip crackle with jangly guitars, power drums, and a thick bass line while vocalist William Cotter belts out lyrics about drinking and girls. This is pandemonium rock chaos; the kind of Rust Belt razor saw music that bands just don’t seem to be able to make today. Terminal is an interesting CD/DVD set that chronicles the brief career of a band that might’ve made a huge statement in the world of rock. It includes the two-song 7″ Pistol Whip released, as well as nine songs from a four-track album demo session the band did before breaking up. What’s great about the demo songs is how the power of what the band is doing manages to overcome the lousy demo quality.
The DVD, while cool, is pretty unnecessary. It includes artwork and some interviews, which are okay, and a crappy show from 1978 as well as two reunion shows. It’s not that any of this is bad, but you’re really here to discover the music, the rest seems like sloppy window dressing. That being said Terminal is a definite must-have for those who love pure, unpolluted rock ‘n’ roll from an era before computers, politics, scenes, and costumes robbed rock of its balls.