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The Grannies - Ballsier

by Kevin Wierzbicki

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This five-piece features guys that dress as old ladies and give themselves stage names like Anita Drink and Helena Handbasket but don't let the schtick fool you; there's nothing goofy about the Grannies' music. Imagine what a punk-leaning garage rock outfit fronted by Keith Richards might sound like and you've got a pretty good idea of the cool music to be found on Ballsier. Lead singer Wizard Sleeves has a voice that's not unlike Richards' and the band is fond of rocking out to simple garage rock rhythms pushed along by dueling lead guitars ("Eviller") and sometimes wrapped in blues harp riffing from bassist Jayne Fondle ("Trouble Hurricane"). "Soviet" is a bit of Clash-style rock and while there are not too many nods to Strummer, Jones and company here, Clash fans should like the overall tone of the album. Producer Jack Endino (Nirvana, Mudhoney) does an excellent job of bringing out the best of the band without tamping down their raw energy. Most of this impressive effort was written by the band but they also include a cover of Slaughter & the Dogs "Cranked up Really High" and a run-through of the Beastie Boys' "Fight for Your Right" to finish the set.

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The Grannies - Ballsier
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