The Compulsions (Richard Fortus and Frank "Thunderchucker" Ferrer of Guns N' Roses, legendary New York Dolls bassist Sami Yaffa and singer Rob Carlyle) have been around for a few years and put out a few records but the aptly-titled Dirty Fun is the release that should put the New York City-based band on the national radar.
The set opens with the harmonica-enhanced rocker "Hellbound Babies," a tune that evokes the rougher, less-poppy side of the Romantics while "Lucky" is straight out of the Rolling Stones songbook with its reworking of the "Brown Sugar" guitar riff.
Carlyle has a slightly smoky voice that is perfect for shading songs like "Evil Bastards" and "House of Rock" with hints of danger and he also sounds eerie talk-singing about "the coolest band in the world" on the narcotic haze of "The Feel." The song is a sharp contrast to "I Still Got the Hots for You, Baby," a barrelhouse rocker that mashes up the Stones with Lynyrd Skynyrd.
The guys are not shy about lifting a riff here and there from the classics; "Stay Eazy" borrows from Eric Clapton and there's a distinct Creedence Clearwater Revival vibe to "Buzz Awhile," and the set includes the band's take on the Little Richard chestnut "Long Tall Sally."
The Compulsions aren't trying to reinvent the wheel here but they roll it pretty damn good, as you'd expect from a veteran line-up. Dirty fun indeed.
The album comes out April 14th. Pre-order here.