5.6.7.8's

The 5.6.7.8's

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The thing about the 5.6.7.8's, is that sometimes they're a better idea in theory than in practice.

The trio of retro-rockin' Japanese ladies has a fun rock & roll attitude, complete with '60s mini-dresses and maxi-beehives. Musically, the band has equally fun moments, but the cartoonish shtick can wear thin quickly. Simply put: once you're hooked, you're hooked. But, if the 5.6.7.8's don't appeal to you instantly, they likely never will since there's not a lot going on under the surface party atmosphere. The 5.6.7.8's are often more concerned with creating a goofy good-time atmosphere than creating truly substantial or innovative rock music -- and that's not a bad thing. For fans of their playful -- and deliciously primitive -- brand of garage/rockabilly, they are the top of the genre, along with acts such as the wilder, more over-the-top Guitar Wolf. The band excels at taking the hip-shakin' elements of surf, rockabilly and garage rock and stripping it down to its bare bones. Even with minimal or sometimes hard-to-decipher lyrics the message is clear. The band's wild, giddy sound shares some common traits with wigged-out brethren such as the Cramps and the Pandoras. Songs with colorful, self-explanatory titles such as "I Walk Like Jayne Mansfield" and "Teenage Cleopatra" add to the band's charm. As far as garage revival acts go, they're probably not the best players or singers in the pack (a trait that often adds a punk rock appeal to their otherwise sweet sound). Nonetheless, the group's carefree sound and merry mangling of English are infectiously fun for those who like their rock & roll to be a little bit more bubblegum, favoring style over substance. Though they'd long maintained something of a cult following, the band's profile was slightly heightened in early 2003 and 2004, when Quentin Tarantino featured the revived group in his Kill Bill films and one of their songs, (the super-catchy 1996 ditty, "Woo Hoo") was picked up for a telephone ad campaign.

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