WHAT WE DID
GRAND THEFT AUDIO
After years spent moldering in some Connecticut closet, the last elusive component of the Cleveland proto-punk trifecta is finally getting a little sun. When godhead group Rocket From the Tombs split in 1976, the fragments re-emerged as art punks Pere Ubu (whom you've heard of), trash rockers the Dead Boys (whom you've heard of) and Saucers, Tombs bassist Craig Bell's garage-y pop band, of whom the world has heard very very little till this comprehensive lost-tapes reissue. Half the fun here is in indulging your compare-and-contrast nerdism: Saucers turn Bell's signature first-wave song "Final Solution" from a creepy suicide song into an almost hapless psych-guitar freakout; "Slow Down" plays spacey little brother to Tombs guitarist Peter Laughner's ballad "Amphetamine." But once Saucers dropped too-enthusiastic keyboardist Malcolm Doak, they found a solid sound of their own, a sort of Nuggets halfway between Ubu's irradiated guitar skronk and the Dead Boys' booze-and-leather bad-boy-isms. "Hypnotized," "I Didn't Get It" and "Roadmaster" are snarly guitar-vs.-organ knife fights in a dark alley somewhere between 1969 and 1977, broken up by the sappy, sad-boy song "Certain Kind of Shy" and organist/guitarist Katherine Cormack's peppy "Quiet Boy." The chronological arrangement of the songs suits Saucers well; in perfect Clevelandian tradition, they broke up just as they were really getting good—and it took 20 years for us to hear most of it. (Chris Ziegler)
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Orange County, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.