Ladies and Gentlemen...

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At the opening of this album, erstwhile Figgs frontman Mike Gent announces, "I'm getting in the groove now," and then launches into a Georgia Satellites guitar shuffle. "Sorry," he says, flubbing the take and then picking the crunchy rhythm back up. Suddenly, three-quarters of Boston's Gravel Pit jump in, with guitarist Lucky Jackson introducing himself with a few peals before settling into a T. Rex rhythm. "I met her in the summer of my sorrow/She was high-heel deep in a bottle of sour mash," sings Gent. "She looked like June and she talked like Johnny Cash." Mike and the boys definitely find their groove on this album, and barroom rock never sounded so good -- a distillation of boozy Faces, Flamin' Groovies amphetamine rock & roll, and late-'70s Graham Parker muscular pop. There isn't a loser in the bunch, but highlights include the aforementioned "Sour Mash," "Speedbaby," "Top Heavy," and the nearly perfect "When We Broke in Two."

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