Flexx Bronco- Spritzer

Flexx Bronco
Volume 3

Self Destructo
12" LP

This San Francisco-based band roars with a ferocious punk 'n' roll sound that comes courtesy of a two-guitar attack from axe men Filthy and Eroc who play fret-singeing riffs and solos throughout. On songs like "Deadman (2014)" though the band tones down the punk in favor of a cool mash-up of AC/DC-like blues rock and Motley Crue-style sleaze. Shades of the late great Willy DeVille creep into Guy Thunderbird's vocals on "Heart on the Floor (Original)," a bit of 1950's-style R&B-flavored pop that surprisingly fits in nicely with the louder selections on the record. It's back to rockin' for the Kiss-meets-Social Distortion "Big Sky Fire" and the stoner stomp of "Vallejo;" the reprise (alternate version) of "Heart on the Floor" buzzes pretty good too as it forgoes the '50s bent of the original for a full-on in-your-face blast of punk. And you might think that a tune called "Filthy's Lullaby" would put you to sleep but no no; the song finds Flexx Bronco showing off a bit more rowdy Kiss love. The band is rounded out with drummer Thor Bigsby and the foursome have made a record here that's made to hold up for repeat listens and definitely meant to be played loud. Includes download card.

"Don't Die, Kill Me" b/w "Melt"

Paper Garden
7" single, colored vinyl, picture sleeve

While "Don't Die, Kill Me" has an ominous-sounding title the song is actually a buoyant, non-scary pop rocker filled with lilting melodies and cheery vocals from front man Matt Meade. In a nod to some of the greatest pop tunes of the '50s and '60s, the early part of the song also showcases trebly guitar and vaguely Latin percussion that recalls something that Roy Orbison might have done. Still the song sounds thoroughly modern, as does the big beat of "Melt" even though it also pays homage to the surf era. Spin both sides of this one and you're guaranteed to have a better day from that point on.

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