Sweet Justice

Sweet Justice

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Frank Meyer is a man who loves his rock & roll, as anyone who has ever lent an ear to his work with the Streetwalkin' Cheetahs already knows, but his definition of the term goes beyond mere faster-and-louder blamalama, and the self-titled debut album from his new band Sweet Justice moves past the old-school punk sounds of the Cheetahs into plenty of tasty new directions. Teaming up with ex-ADZ bassist Bruce Duff and drummer Chris Markwood (who kept time for the Bellrays), Meyer and Sweet Justice deliver the high-powered goods on tunes like the bitter "Sold Me Out" and the blazing "Blood and Alcohol," but the trio offers plenty more for your entertainment dollar -- straight-from-the-gut blues ("True to You," "Travellin' Blues"), '70s style party shakers ("Outta Site," "Last Night"), Thin Lizzy-on-speed power ballads ("Johnny Rico and the Kid"), deep-space dub ("Hey Christina"), and high-gloss pop production pieces ("If You Look Like a Star," with guest vocals from Save Ferris belter Monique Powell). For some bands, eclecticism is a code word for not knowing just what you want to do, but Sweet Justice sound firmly committed and confident on all 13 tracks, and with good reason -- these guys have damn good songs, they play 'em with passion, skill, and just the right touch (no matter which direction they're going), and they're not so interested in worrying about what they "should" be doing as they are in making a great record. And that's just what they've done: Sweet Justice is a very impressive calling card for a band's first turn at bat, and while they could go any number of places from this starting point, it's hard to imagine many of 'em not being well-worth hearing. Impressive stuff, even if the prior resumes of the guys on board mean nothing to you.

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