Tony Adolescent / ADZ

The Piper at the Gates of Downey

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For their second album, recorded with a partially new lineup behind singer Tony Reflex, ADZ nicked their title from Pink Floyd -- the next album, 1999's Transmissions from Planet Speedball, would feature a scorching cover of "Lucifer Sam" -- but its sound remains solidly in the Adolescents tradition of deft hardcore with strong pop roots. Rockers like the bracing opener, "Driving With the Radio On," mix the sound of Adolescents classics like "Balboa Fun Zone" with a sharper sense of melody and hooks, and the results sound like an appealing cross between Redd Kross (especially on the gloriously snotty "Summer of Haight") and early Green Day. Produced by Geza X (whose wife, '80s new wave star Josie Cotton, chips in with some background vocals here and there), the album has a comfortably old-school sound reminiscent of the glory days of the L.A. punk scene. The band even throws in a few changeups, the most effective being the six-minute closer, "The Shoemaker," which features an uncharacteristically relaxed tempo and some corrosive, parable-like lyrics, and sounds kind of like a much less pretentious Pearl Jam.

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