There are a million bands out there... finally one that counts is back, the Rock City Angels. Who could have guessed in 1988 when Young Man’s Blues was released by Geffen Records that it would be 20 years until their follow up cd would be unleashed.
The Rock City Angels were born in late 1981 at a screening of “The Decline of Western Civilization” when bass player Andy Panik met future vocalist Bobby Durango and they started a band together in south Florida. Ever the rebellious ones, the band called the Abusers, were a punk band in a world of cover acts and rose quickly through the ranks by sheer force of will and talent. After opening for such acts as Black Flag, UK Subs, TSOL and the Circle Jerks, they rebelled again and expanded their musical horizons. No longer content with the limitations imposed by punk rock, they began to experiment with different styles of music, while keeping their punk edge.
It was during this time that they changed their name to Rock City Angels and worked different musical genres into their style. From glam, soul and blues to classic rock, the band then moved to Los Angeles where they quickly gained a following with their inclusion of guitar players Johnny Depp and Mike Angel. In 1987 they were signed to Geffen Records, soon after Johnny had left to pursue a career in acting and Angel quit for personal reasons.
With the basic line-up in tow, they moved to Memphis where Bobby, Andy, Doug Banks and drummer Ringo Jukes hooked up with guitarist Mike Barnes to record the Young Man’s Blues LP with Jim Dickinson who had just produced the Replacements.
Young Man’s Blues went on to become a critical favorite of 1988 and sold hundreds of thousands worldwide. The band toured first with Jimmy Page, then Joan Jett and the Georgia Satellites. In 1991 the band toured Japan to sold out venues and continued to write for their next Geffen release.
That release would never come. Geffen failed to honor their contract and the band broke up in 1993. Throughout the 90’s Bobby and Andy continued to play in other bands
while on the internet a revolution was coming. In 2001 Bobby discovered that Young Man’s Blues was still a cult favorite and decided to try to record something different, something more personal. He recruited his old friends Andy, Jimmy James (an original RCA guitarist) and new drummer Chris Yates to create Use Once and Destroy, a powerful revolutionary statement on the world. Use Once and Destroy had three main goals:
1) to comment on an apathetic, consumer based society
2) to issue a call to action
3) to re-establish the Rock City Angels as the artistic, innovative force they always were.
“Use Once and Destroy” has accomplished those goals and more.
Durango and the band fought all obstacles to place this album in your hands and brought you another peek at life from the underground.
Tear down your life and start over. Use Once and Destroy is here.
And Listen To What People Are Saying About It....
Rock City Angels
Use Once and Destroy
SugarBuzz Magazine ~
Take heed my brothers and sisters. Rock and Roll has once again reared its head in retaliation of the dreaded ho hum. Music that matters still resides, albeit not always on the airwaves, but in the hearts, souls and minds of those brave enough to seek it out and not conform. If it crosses my path, I share and sound the trumpet, and no louder will it resonate then for the new CD from Rock City Angels.
If you know Rock City Angels, you know the score. Florida, Hollywood, Depp, Geffen, Young Man’s Blues and oblivion. “Use Once and Destroy” indeed. Then 20 years later, the phoenix rises. Interesting read available elsewhere. No re-hash here. I always was a meat and potatoes kind of guy. Let’s dig in.
Revolution is arising, Mamas Red and Blue and Brother Clem say its so. Be ready, right now, right here, right now, because we are go fuckers! “Psychopath” grabs a hold and creepy crawlies up the central nervous system. Super raunchy ruckus rocks before the change up to melodic malady. Soaring sonic scenarios of sound seep from six strings. Durango doesn’t miss a step mixing old and new as you know were it’s been and where it hath going.
Serving up a sizzling slice of “Corrine” electrifies synapses supreme. Full frontal rock sans fake facades. Showing his hand, Durango seemingly snarls with determined direction. And hurray for Jimmy James’ kick ins; he’s in the spotlight and showing the love.
Not relinquishing possession, “I Got Your Heart” absolutely tears it up one side and down the other. Sporting an Idol sneer, this two and a half minute kicker gets the job done and then some. Exceptional listen close Rick Steff keys enhance ‘subliminal seduction”.
Placing a pit right in the stomach of any rebellious youngster, “Report Card Day” leaves no excuses for lackluster academic and sheer apathetic behavior. Seems the good for nothing just wants to rock. How many of us have been in this situation. Bobby is in the same boat. Rock City Angels dig the punk roots deep for this ala snot. Billie Joe is Green with envy and Mr. Yates addresses the class with tom tom tight. A lot of fun.
“Coffee and Cigarettes” has stained my teeth and etched a crevice in my brain. This is one of those songs you will pipe up when asked for all time favorites. Delightful Clash like crescendo and decrescendo lavish the landscape. Late night conversations kill, put on the pot. The additional wind instruments give this song an almost Orleans flavor and when the vocal effect kicks in the listener is transported back to The Heigh-Ho Club circa 1929. Everything and the kitchen sink in a trim-line package. Ace.
Home-boy Bukowski’s introductory excerpt from “Born into This” sets the stage for title track “Use Once and Destroy”. Sounding like apocalyptic spiders from mars, the madhouse spills out into the night like rats run amok. Bobby can hardly contain the agony of the wayward path as Jimmy reflects the pain. You’ll be begging to be dragged down too as it gets in under your skin.
A volatile driving blend of 60’s invasion garage ala The Animals and early Seeds psychedelic sowing shine forth on deep cut (I Ain’t No) Miracle Worker. This classic track written by Nanci Matz and Annette Tucker has been covered by legends such as The Chocolate Watchband, The Barracudas, The Brogues and don’t forget the unforgettable Great Scots. Simple man put on a pedestal, can’t make no promises baby. Rock City Angles retain the swinging sound while bringing it full force into the twenty first century.
The true grit of “Keep Fighting” packs a powerful punch upside the noggin. Come on down to the winners circle and dump the loser. Worse for wear, but not defeated, you’ll dig in deep and spit. Break the chains running with this uplifting Positraction.
More punk edge than morphed exile glam, Bobby has the runny noise and greased panache in tow as he sports “Convicted”. More in the vain of Ramones, Social D. and The Mansfields, this jailhouse straight to hell vent of anger will put some piss and vigor in your swagger.
Downtrodden misery never hurt so good as the beseeching blue note “Comeback”. Lovelorn lusciousness languishes longingly. Wallow in the feel good pass the brown bag. Make your move, before it’s too late. I got the blues for you.
Opening with what seeems to be Mr. Rogers psychedelic neighbrohood testimonials, “Divine Asylum” sends out a lysergic invitation for a journey inside Bobby Durango’s mind. Swirling trails of color building within keys and flange. Visionary escapeism, let your troubles flow. Take a giant step outside and find.
And so it ends….. Shugsters, take the money you saved by burning your mom’s copy of Chinese Democracy and slap it down for Use Once and Destroy. As for me, I’ sitting on the front porch listening to Rock City Angels; all the while keeping an eye to the wind and an ear to the ground.
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It totally hits you at a gut level. Bobby's voice has never sounded better! the melodies are haunting and catchy with the perfect amount of blues pain and pissed off punk bite. the "take my brain" verse in psychopath gives me chills man. this rocks like a motherfucker. forget that new GNR album this blows that way way outta the water. ROCK N ROLL - KEVIN PROSTITUE of The Prostitutes
Use Once and Destroy.. I would but I can't get this killer disc out of my CD player! Rock & Roll with Punk Soul. This is the real deal. If you RCA/Durango fans don't have this one yet DO IT NOW! If there was any justice in this world, which we know there is not, the title track would be a huge hit. Rock on Durango! - TIM LIVINGSTONE of The Last Conspirators
Rock City Angels- Use Once & Destroy (2008)
Only the raunchiest & sleaziest of Rock N Roll bands get my full respect and attention these days. Less Metal, More Punk, and Rough around the edges the way The Dead Boys, The Dictators, NY Dolls, Iggy & The Stooges, & Hanoi Rocks ALL did it!!! Rock City Angels are still the great booze soaked, attitude driven Sleaze Rock I loved 20 years ago.
"Psychopath" starts off this disc with snippets of soundbytes from either a radio or television broadcast about end of the world prophecies, violence, and political turmoil. Then Bobby Durango kick out the jams like The Heartbreakers meets Iggy & The Stooges, and then it gets all Stoogey and dark during the chorus. So cool!!! The line "Fuck me in the ass, so you can scratch my itch...Take my brain" is probably about ones search for a getting so high to kill the pain. "Corrine" is a mid paced Rocker that tells a story about a love gone wrong with a girl named Corrine. It's got real soulful Memphis organ and a great groove. "I got your heart" is a similar song, but with more of a punkier vibe. "Report Card Day" recalls the sounds of TSOL & The Adolescents, and kicks some serious ass!!!
"Coffee & Cigarettes" could've appeared on Self Destruction Blues by Hanoi Rocks with it's Clash styled grooves!!! "Use Once & Destroy" almost is like the Velvet Underground & The Stooges with it's deep & dark mellow sounds. "Keep Fighting" & "Convicted" stays on the Punk vibe, but I loved "Comeback" because of bluesy & soulful sound reminiscent to their Young Man Blues record. "Psychopath" & "Comeback" are my favorite songs on this record.
It's great to have Rock City Angels back!!!!
8/10 whiskey shots.
(Rikki X) HOT FUDGE MAGAZINE
ROCK CITY ANGELS ~ USE ONCE AND DESTROY
THIS CD IS AMAZING! it takes me back to another time, to another place. it's a vibe to get lost in.
A band I have only recently become aware of, a band with a fascinating history, throw in Johnny Depp, pre- 21 Jump Street, broken contracts, unbroken dreams, spanning LA to Memphis, many many personnel changes over the years, but always preserving THEIR sound....this cd is post-Depp, Andy Panik, Bobby Durango, Jimmy James, & Chris Yates...for the whole story go see for yourself-you know the drill, they're in my top...easy to find...
I've since made the acquaintance of their singer Bobby Durango, just recieved my signed limited edition copy 0025 that came in a really cool handmade pouch (already wrapped for Xmas, you lazy bastards...lol...makes a great stocking stuffer...the cd, not Mr. Durango)
whiskey soaked vocals steeped in too many cigarettes...
what my husband calls GREASER ROCK...evokes an image of guys with greased back hair, sporting bowling shirts and lotsa INK, howling about fast cars and faster women...
I, then went to their MySpace to see what kind of musicians had produced this....not at all what I had pictured in my mind...
Glam Punk Big Hairs...Ya Woooo! nary a bowling shirt amongst them;)
and a little bit Social Distortion, a hardcore PUNK edge, bad boy attitude
and songs that just make ya wanna cry....
I'll be listening to this cd for a long time to come.
Use Once And Destroy...not a chance...RECYCLE...over and over and over again - Malice In Wonderland
Rock City Angels - Use Once And Destroy - It's been a long goddamn wait (what, about twenty years or so?) for me to hear the follow-up to this Memphis gutbucket rock band's seminal "Young Man's Blues", but hell if it isn't worth every Durango-deficient minute! Just got this new disc in the mail yesterday, and have been rocking it out in the ipod, with the windows down (gotta love Las Vegas in December). It was always amazing to me that bands like the Angels, and Junkyard got unfairly lumped in with the "glam" bands of the '80's. Their first album was a surprisingly musically mature one, laying Memphis horns on top of their gritty southern punk rock sound. And this one is every bit as good, and even more raw and spiky. If their previous sound was resting on five (with southern rock on zero, and punk on ten), this one cranks it up to about seven. You still get the horns, and organ, but the real meat is the razorblade guitars, and Bobby Durango's snarling, howling vocal style. His influences are on display here, from the Iggy Pop-ish "Coffee And Cigarettes" (think "The Passenger"), to the Dolls- "Comeback" sounds like a Johnny Thunders ballad, in that he eschews "pretty" singing, for a ragged vulnerability and desperation to be heard, that gives the song infinitely more emotional weight. He even channels early Rock City Angels, on "I Keep Fighting", which would not have sounded out of place on "Young Man's Blues". I think my favorite track, though is the bitter, mid-tempo dirge that is the title track (how could I not love any song that opens with a spoken word sample by Charles Bukowski?). And, as one of the first fifty people to pre-order the cd, mine came in a nifty little cloth case, like the Crown Royal of albums! It's been a great year for rock and roll, and this is the sweet, kick-ass cherry on top. Don't waste your money on "Chinese Democracy", people- discerning rock and rollas demand "Use Once And Destroy" !!!! - Gary Rabuzzi