...and I heard the song "Sunglasses After Dark" being played from behind the door. Before that I had never heard The Cramps, yet I ran in and bought the CD right out of the stereo for $4. This rocks from start to finish, and is the best straight-through listen album I own.
We are all indebted to this band still. One of the single greatest testaments of punk, rockabilly, horror rock, and rock 'n' roll ever recorded. Greasy, primal, sleazy, primative, raw - just a few adjectives well suited at describing this album. And unlike many albums, the cover songs are just as good as the originals. I can honestly not see how anybody could hate this album, unless of course if you are an art snob who thinks "The Wall" is the greatest album ever. Hard rocking and catchy as hell.
I suppose it's old news about Lux Interior dying 50-years-and-a-day after Buddy Holly, but I'd be mistaken to not put in a word about what the guy's influence meant to me. The Cramps are, without a doubt, one of the big influences on my life, a fact that becomes clearer as I get older. I'm not just talking about music, though about 90 percent of my records are due to their bad guidance. Their ability to take the best elements of early Rock 'n' Roll and make it completely their own freed me and a lot of others from what C.S. Lewis once called "chronological snobbery": the mindset that "new" is better, and that contemporary culture trumps all other considerations. That point really began to be made when I started hearing the originals of the songs The Cramps covered: that bloodcurdling scream The Phantom lets out at the beginning of "Love Me"? Sorry, college boy, but REM ain't gonna cut it after that. It was Lux and Ivy that showed that the truly great stuff stands outside...
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