Frank Soda

Saturday Night Getaway

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After just one studio album with The Imps, Frank Soda decided it was high time to go solo. Part of it was frustration with that previous album, which didn't capture the band's live energy; it seems pretty telling that when he finally went solo, Soda dragged along a number of staple numbers to finally redo them in the studio. While tracks like "Saturday Night Getaway" and "Break the Ice" still don't match up with the live versions, they still have far more spark than the material on the Frank Soda & The Imps release. Better, "Moon Man" is given a more realized and more fitting treatment in its studio rendition. (There's even a Jethro Tull-style flute!) The new material is a bit of a mixed bag. The funk-ish "Skin Graft" is based on an incident Soda had with one of his many exploding pieces of headgear, which burned his hair and skin; some would say that the bigger tragedy is that the lyrics "skin graft, skin graft, when you're kissing my face, you're kissing my ass" were the, uh, end result. The version of "Born to be Wild," on the other hand, takes a song that's almost become a cliché to cover and gives it a slight rhythmic twist that actually makes it worth a listen or two. Throughout, Soda shows off more of the guitar ability that he distinguished himself with during live shows, and that alone guarantees a more satisfying album.

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