Gosh, old cool rock man here remembers when the Willowz were just a four-track recording on a CDR: no guitar solos, no Marshall stacks, no blonde tips or boardshorts—it was like they didn't even care about everything Orange County punk rock stands for! And they didn't, as further research would determine, with singer/guitarist Richie spitting equally enthusiastically at the tar-pit-bred cave-rock that preceded his little mom's-garage band and the new-fangle-spangle cheese queens that would later flank him in the glossy magazines. Hate: it's an admirable trait, and the best part of this local-boys-plus-gal make famous—not our fault or theirs, but the Willowz are probably the rawest, snottiest thing to make it over the fence from Anaheim since who knows when, a Troggs/Count Five attitude even if they're veering Wilson-ward in their newest songs (hey, we can't help learning to play . . . ). Their new record is their best record and when the dust they're kicking up—movie soundtrack, signature underwear set, matching inner-lip tattoos—turns back to mud, history will listen back with ears uninformed and unprepared and think: "Wow, these guys came up with 'Hollaback Girl'?" Not a dis, just a juxposition. Willowz will be doing club hits in '06 anyway.
The Willowz perform with the Vacation at the Glass House, 200 W. 2nd St., Pomona; www.theglasshouse.us. Tues., 7:30 p.m. $10. All ages.