Music » Band of the Week

Rocket From the Tombs

Rocket Redux (Smog Veil Records)

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What a cool move it was for the Clash not to reunite. Not just for the admirable gumption it took to turn down loads of cash, but also for allowing their legend to live in opaque memory banks, where the myth can expand exponentially.

Lord knows, cash never weighed into Rocket From the Tombs' decision to re-form. So it was a pure delight to see their recent reunion shows, which crackled with the genuine fire of men who never played more than about 10 times back in the day. But here, their proto-punk masterpieces get nothing in the way of a regrooming. Redux sounds like it was knocked out in a couple of days, though not in the lo-fi frazzled manner of the originals; these are dry, rote run-throughs with little variation in arrangement.

But hell, the boys are having fun, and the press they're getting ought to give the kids something to ponder while they're discovering where all this punk stuff came from. With Rocket Redux, the legend just gets a little less opaque.

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