By Adam Lovinus
By Lilledeshan Bose
By Gabriel San Roman
By Rachel Mattice
By Stephanie Zacharek
By Daniel Kohn
By Nate Jackson
By Mike Seeley
P>> Gasoline Addicts (self-titled CD). "This is hard-driving music that pumps you full of energy. It makes you want to get crazy, like burn cop cars and stuff (kidding!). They put on a great live show, too, but this CD is definitely one to get, if you can find it (try Noise Noise Noise in Costa Mesa—they carry a lot of great local stuff)."
> Oscar. "The kind of band you can stand around and groove to. They have a smooth, funky sound, unique in comparison to other bands currently playing the club circuit. They have a lot of styles rolled into one, but they still make it work. When you're watching them, they'll hold your attention so much that you won't even think about grabbing a beer, smoking a cigarette or even taking a piss."
> Element 17. "Another band you love to watch live. They have a hard, aggressive sound, but they're totally capable of slowing it down without losing their edge. Their singer has a great stage presence and reminds me somewhat of the way Jim Morrison always commanded the crowd's attention. They're just being themselves and playing what they want to play, and it's rare to see a band that's not trying to fit in anywhere. They're not trying to be metal or Blink-182, just a good, kick-ass rock band."
> Smear. "Disco for the new millennium! They have an old-school disco thing going on, combined with a shredding metal guitarist named Monty (The God of Guitar!) and a killer drummer named George (The King of Drums!). They're currently working on a new CD; hopefully that'll be available at some of their upcoming shows, so you can take their songs home with you and boogie away in the privacy of your own home."
> Playing at Canes in San Diego with Lit. "So we get to this place early for sound check, and there are already kids lined up 'round the building. They were curious as to who Naked Movie Star were, but they were already asking us to take pictures with them. When we came out to play our set, the place was packed! Before we played a note, kids were going nuts. We had never experienced this kind of reaction before. After our set, people kept following us and coming up to us—we must have signed about 200 autographs that night. It was a taste of rock stardom. If we never made it, that would be fine, because we'd at least have this experience to remember."