Chrome Cranks

Live in Exile

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Bowing out with a big old roar, the Chrome Cranks wrapped up their existence with a live document, unsurprisingly, given the name, recorded around the time of Love in Exile's release. While arguably the Chrome Cranks almost went about their business with a little too much studied cool at points -- you can blame Peter Aaron's attempts at slow moaning for that -- when they wanted to rock, they did so with gusto. Taken from two separate dates in the Netherlands, the 19-song collection fills a CD and generally justifies its existence via some great garage-y psychosis and rave-ups. If the Cramps worked the synthesis better in the end, the Cranks made their own creditable mark with their own New York backgrounds to draw on. The Peter Aaron/William Weber guitar team makes all the appropriate feedback twang and abuse, while Jerry Teel's bass playing and Bob Bert's drumming keeps things shuffling or pounding along creditably. Most of the original numbers are fairly interchangeable but no less enjoyable for that, and inspired titles like "Hot Blonde Cocktail" and "Dead Man's Suit" are, generally speaking, lived up to. Strong points include the brief rampage "Wrong Number," with some messy guitar bursts, the great aggro strut of "Way-Out Lover," and the ominous-then-rampaging concluding number, "Burn Baby Burn." Besides revisiting past covers of the traditional "See That My Grave Is Kept Clean" and T. Rex's "The Slider" -- the latter with some distinctly non-Marc Bolan-like yells -- two further remakes flesh out the disc. "Fire Escape," originally written and performed by fellow trash rock enthusiasts the Scientists, gets a lip-smacking stomp and shout treatment. Meanwhile, an even earlier set of forebears gets the nod via a lengthy, loud-as-heck rip through "The Pusher," the Hoyt Axton song later made into one of Steppenwolf's own hits.

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