TOO MUCH FOR THE CITY - Idol Lips (Zodiac Killer Records)
Wearing your heart on your sleeve is one thing. When it ends up on your neckties, all over your chest and weighing down your lapel jacket like a collection of war medals, it gets problematic. Or so I'm told. Despite the Heartbreakers fixation (who writes: "Catch 'Em While They're Still Alive" across the inside of their CD slick?) these Italian maniacs kick out some incendiary jams.

The most salient things to be said about "Too Much For The City" are that (a.) it's all been done before and (b.) it ends just as it's slipping into top gear.

You know the drill: Two guitars, bass and drums and a singer who sneers worse than your grand aunty when you stumble into the family reunion five hours late and reeking of hops.

"Smell of Female" is not a Cramps tribute but a one-and-ahalf-minute volley of Dead Boys snarl. "Too Much For the City" is pulled along by rumbling bass and more firestorm guitars and "Kick Your Ass" does indeed apply a size 12 to the gluteus. Nothing subtle about the chorus but, hey, did "Really gonna punch you out" tread softly when you got down to tin tacks?

"Can't Take It (No More)" reminds me of Sonny Vincent. Idol LIps should be honoured. The words are sung in English but I still struggled to make them out. On that subject, it's all in the delivery of "Reeech Beeeach" - sorry "Ritch Bitch" - which had me sniggering.

Production is uncredited but better than many Italian bands. Rock and roll's not exactly embraced in many parts of Europe and bands from its southern reaches often end up finding it hard to hook up with a decent studio.

Enjoyable for what it is (that'd be old school New York punk with garlic pizza breath), this nine-track "album" clocks in at 16 minutes. I've been in car crashes that took longer than that but at least boredom doesn't set in. - The Barman


 

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