Friday, August 12, 2011

The Cute Lepers

So, I've liked Steve E Nix's retropunk fixation for quite awhile, but it was just pure retropunk- all fetishizing a mythical 1977, with little to add. Forming the Cute Lepers was a step in the right direction, as up until the latest record, it's been punk-informed Power Pop. Now, with Adventure Time, we're getting to the payoff on all that. The music is still heavily referencing older music- there's a lot of Buzzcocks, and the Saints in there, but a new element makes it a better ballgame- Bruce Springsteen. Seriously, I can hear more than an echo of "Born to Run" era Springsteen in the new tunes and I like it. I'm not a big fan of Springsteen. I think he, like Nix, is a bit too slavish in his hero worship of earlier sounds, but the thing that Springsteen does bring is a kind of urgency- a desperation to cling to cliches as if not doing so will rob him of his life. That's what makes Springsteen listenable, where his progeny are not (ever listened all the way through a mid 80's John Cougar LP? How about ever made it all the way through Bat out of Hell 2? Meat loaf is a neat guy, and a good actor, but that stuff will drive you to applying a nail gun to your forehead). Steve E seems to have managed to channel some of that, and it really has elevated the music. So, yes, I can finally say that I like the Cute Lepers...

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