The New Bomb Turks are stale cigarettes, cheap beer, ratty dartboards, dog-eared cards, one-night stands, and mislaid plans masquerading as a rock ’n’ roll band. They are the Saints and the Stooges. They are saints and stooges: Vocalist Eric Davidson delivers losers’ laments with an Iggyesque snarl as his band FedExes three chords straight to your hips. “Jukebox Lean” is a ferocious blast, with Davidson howling about slick fellas who hang around the jukebox, whistling, and ruining the tunes for the rest of the crowd. (Davidson even cops the refrain from Echo and the Bunnymen’s “Do It Clean,” proving that the Turks, despite evidence to the contrary, know the ’80s existed.) “Wrest Your Hands” swaggers like Exile-era Stones, and the rest of the album rages through pure power-chord punk. The band may seem like an anachronism, but the Turks’ genial devotion to “rocking,” itself an anachronism, is so pure and so perfect it’s impossible to fault them. Davidson sufficiently sums up the group’s position on “Shoot the Offshoot”: “Oh yeah/Mediocrity is the enemy/It’s your next door neighbor/It’s the pigs, it’s your pals/It’s 1996/It’s time to throw a fit in the face of the crowd/I am not original/But I’m not the same.”

—Christopher Porter

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