Mars Needs Women

Sparking Ray Gun

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Sparking Ray Gun shoots too soon with the oddly titled opening salvo "Spank." The four-chord follow-up also displays this Jersey garage gang's rippin' delivery and sore-throated Shawn's (no last names given) enjoyably gruff Average-Joe vocals; but both tracks are much ado about "Nothing." However, "Johnny" spikes the punch, and "Hero" gets the party started right. "Hero" is a smokin' number with a super animated video now lost forever. The quartet has the class to quote Cheap Trick's commercialistic corndog "He's a Whore" in the empathic and neurotic "No Show." Staying with 1977, Mars Needs Women keeps things cooking by throwing a Damned cover on the grill. "Smile Away" and "Gimme What I Need" stick to the ribs and smack of Enuff Z'Nuff's pop tarts. Guitar throttles throughout, with especially cool scratching on "T.V. Toy." Sparking Ray Gun bakes like a big American backyard barbecue: some tasty goods to fill up on and no life-changing events; but for the moment, it's paradise.

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