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Dementia 13: Graveyard Rumble

Dementia 13

Graveyard Rumble
FNS Records, 2004

Last month, on a trip to Minneapolis, I raided Cheapo's bargain bin, picking up a pile of seven-inchers for a dollar apiece. I've always enjoyed the gamble of diving into a box of discarded records released by bands I've never heard of, knowing full well that I'm much more likely to end up with a load of awful music than with something I'll end up playing over and over again. The reason I enjoy the gamble, of course, is that, every once in a while, I end up with something like Dementia 13's Graveyard Rumble E.P.

As weird as it sounds, Dementia 13 is a psychobilly oi! band hailing from Manchester, New Hampshire -- and a damn good one at that. As one might expect from a band whose name comes from a trashy horror film, Dementia 13 dips into the same pool of campy monster imagery as the Cramps, Groovie Ghoulies, Misfits, and HorrorPops, delivering lyrics about scrapping zombies and rampaging vampires. At the same time, Al's Boston-style street punk rasp recalls the best of the Dropkick Murphys school of New England Celtic punk, making for a delightful aural bouillabaisse unlike pretty much anything else out there.

Track Listing:

Track 1. "The Saw is Family." A frantic rockabilly instrumental named after the chainsaw in the third installment of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

Track 2. "Graveyard Rumble." Twangy guitars, washboards, and a healthy dose of of barroom whoh-oh-ohs. Beautiful. You almost forget the song's about a massive zombie brawl.

Track 3. "Fright Night." Take the most melodic whoa-oh-ohs you can imagine, have Bram Stoker write lyrics for Shane MacGowan, and get Patricia Day to play bass for you, and you might, just maybe, come up with something as good as this song.

Track 4. "The Drifter." Take the last song, replace "Bram Stoker" with "Jack London" and add a harmonica...

Sobriquet Grade: 89 (B+).

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