Hot Roddin’ Romeos- Russian Roulette Review
by: Kristy Krypt
Russian roulette was recently debuted with a bang! These rockin’ Romeos really know how to make first impressions. Starting off with the first track wishin’ you were gone, brings such an amazing sound that your hooked into wanting to hear more. The album is solid and the talent in these fellas shines. The Hot Roddin’ Romeos have brought out a refreshing change in the Seattle music scene. Every track on this album brings diversity from rockabilly, psychobilly, country and in your face rock and roll! The track diamond ring really shines out with its honky-tonk sound. Must hear tracks Russian roulette and six inch heels & dynamite will be sure to get the repeat button. This cd has definitely rocked its way into earning its five out of five stars with its originality and quality sound. This album won’t disappoint, it has something for every rock and roll fan. Russian roulette stands out among the rest of the Seattle and northwest music scene. A must hear for everyone, these guys rock!
Russian Roulette ( Album Review )
by Album Review by : Michael "Mad Mike" Miller (Rock Out ALS)
Sleazy, Greasy and Rocking Hard! The Hot Roddin Romeos' "Russian Roulette" has something for everyone without compimising who they are.
OK, so before I get to how much I LOVE the much anticipated Hot Roddin Romeos full length CD, I must begin with a little background on why I love Rockabilly so much and my great affection for the Romeos. Please indulge me.
My old man and his second wife were big fans of early Rock n Roll, Blues, Folk and Swing. I was raised on Sun Records, Deca, and Motown. Not that I appreciated it much when I was younger, I was surrounded by the music of Elvis, Johnny Cash, Willy Nelson, Hoyt Axton, Richie Valens, the Four tops, Buddy Holly, Bill Hayley and the Comets, Peter Paul and Mary, Patsy Cline, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Hank Williams SR., and Mose Allison just to name a few. After they divorced, my Mother on the other hand, was a ROCKER. She was the one that introduced me to The Beatles, Stones, Zepplin, Bob Seager, Clapton (including Blind Faith, Traffic, Cream, Yardbirds), Floyd, Sabbath, Journey, Foreigner, and MOST importantly FM Radio in the 70’s which introduced me to early PUNK and Metal. In the early 80’s I had the opportunity to go to school in England for 6 months to spend time with my mother who had moved there to be with her new boyfriend that later became her last and best husband. It was about that time that the Stray Cats were breaking in the UK, spawning about a dozen of “…Cat’s” bands. Being the “Yank” in the UK, I was instantly drawn to this new Rockabilly sound. When I moved back, the Stray Cats would finally break the US a year later. The combination of Mom’s Music and Dad’s Music, coupled with the resurgence of Rockabilly in the 80’s only set the stage for my appreciation of Rockabilly from the 80’s on to today.
The wife and I were both big fans of Happy Days and Grease as kids. But, 10 years ago, I discovered the unique beauty which was Betty Page. 6 years ago, thanks to the internet, I discovered that “Pin Up” was alive and well in the “underground”. I became an instant fan of Pin Up and Burlesque. I later realized that these glamorous young ladies hung around these greasy cats with Hot Rods and that they all were into Rockabilly. I quickly started searching down the pinup girls and rockabilly bands in Seattle. I was happy to find a vibrant scene, but was not brave enough to venture into it. I “lurked” around everyone’s MySpace Pages and discovered the Hard Money Saints, Billy Dwayne and the Creepers, Season of Nightmares, and James Hunnicutt (and the Revolvers). I have to admit that I was also “lurking” around Hot Rod Heidi and Miss Kitty Baby’s pages too. I would later expose my wife to this scene. She being an “80’s kid” like me, loved the scene. It was the first time that we both agreed on music. Though she was more “pop” inclined, and I being more “Rock” inclined we found a common ground. She dug the Glamour and the upbeat nature of the music, I was drawn to the Retro “imagery” of the entire scene and couldn’t stay away from the music…simple, clean, non-pretentious…back to basics, but still modern enough to be relevant. It seemed as if the Punk Rockers had grown up, became less “angry” and discovered just how deep and dark Johnny Cash really was.
It didn’t take very long for the both of us to gather up some courage and stop “lurking”. We jumped right in with both feet one day and went to KSER’s “Pull the String Rockabilly Revival” in Everett. We rented a room to attend both days. 2 days of Rockabilly and Hot Rods sounded like an easy way for us to check it all out without having to get out of our comfort zone. On the very first, we were having a blast! Everyone that I had seen on the internet were there and the music was amazing. We hadn’t gone so far as to meet anyone yet, just keeping to ourselves….enter Johnny Rocket with his shit eating grin and “Danny Zucko” swagger and his then girlfriend, the tattooed and glamorous Becky Beware.
“…You two look like pretty cool people, my name’s Johnny Rocket…Wanna hang out with us?...” I was like a 5 year old kid…I made a new friend…and HE was one of the “cool kids”. That weekend, thanks to Johnny and Becky, the wife and I met some of the bands and the Pin up girls. We had a BLAST all weekend and made some damn good friends including Miss Kitty Baby, Sweetpea and the Hard Money Saints. It was also that weekend that we first saw an early version of the Hot Roddin Romeos. I was blown away. If it weren’t for Johnny Rocket, I’d still be “lurking”. Today, I can call many of the “Greasers and Pinup Girls” in Seattle my friends.
Fast forward 4 years. After a few speed bumps and lineup changes, The Hot Roddin Romeos finally release their long awaited full length CD, Russian Roulette. This album, in my opinion is exactly what the Seattle Rockablilly/Pschobilly scene has been waiting for. It breaths new life into what is becoming a dyeing genre. It mixes classic rockabilly with blues, classic rock, and a touch of punk for an exciting, well produced CD that has something for just about anyone. I’ve been listening to it pretty much constantly for 3 weeks straight. Johnny has an Elvis meets Danzig quality to most of his vocals. Dennis “DC” Wheeler’s guitar sound is best described as Kerry King (Slayer) meets Chuck Berry with a touch of classic rock. Mark “Billy Burns” Fletcher’s Stand Up Bass playing is simply solid. Not a lot of tricks or fills, but not basic in any way. Jody Gere “does work” on the skins. His style of playing through the entire album is just free and loose enough to give you the feel of a train that’s out of control, but in the pocket with Billy enough that you know that the train will be on time.
The CD kicks off at full speed with “Wishing You Were Gone”. Jody’s locomotive snare rhythm sets the pace for much to come then DC’s Guitar Distortion lets you know that this album is gonna ROCK. This is a newer version of an older Romeos song and the child’s voice at the end asking “...were’s my mom...” gives you a hint that there’s some “Fuck You, bitch” really in the song. Next song is the title track “Russian Roulette” starts off with the sound of a revolver spinning and then a “click”. This song ha
Hot Roddin' Romeos Band Review
by Jon Rook
What can I say about the Hot Roddin' Romeos that hasn't been said before. This rowdy group of gents have been holding down the Seattle rockabilly scene for the past few years, fueled by PBR, fast cars, and most importantly - rock n' roll, the sky is the limit. I had the pleasure of being one of the engineers on their latest project, which is reminiscent of the early country and rock n' roll music with a modern punk twist, charged guitars, fast drums, and a thundering upright bass - combined with Johnny's smokin' vocals, will be a treat to ANYONE who listens to it. You need to check this guys out!!
-Jon Rook (www.JonRook.com)
Hot Roddin' Romeos Band Review
by Tony Englehart, The Weekly Volcano
"There's just something about rockabilly that gets my motor running. It makes me want to put the top down and drive fast. If you listen to KEXP's Shake the Shack on Friday nights, the Hot Roddin' Romeos are old straw hat. In fact, they are probably one of your favs. Delivering a potent mix of rockabilly, swing and alt. country, the quartet is a party band, plain and simple. Their no-frills approach is what makes them so fun, for by their own admission, these cats are all about cars, bars and guitars."
- Tony Engelhart, The Weekly Volcano (Feb 14, 2008)
"Most important for rock n' roll combos, more, even than chops or cohesion, is the intent alurk and the romeos rank high on all counts!"
- DC Larson, Rockabilly magazine (Dec 23, 2007)