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Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats

Night Creeper

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The plodding pot-rock played by Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats is not where one goes for a whole lot of rock and roll innovation. It's an incredibly tried, true, tested, re-tested and re-tested again kind of formula that has its roots somewhere around Birmingham, fewer than 100 miles west of Uncle Acid's hometown of Cambridge, England. The formula goes roughly like this: Assemble band, preferably with folks who are fully competent players ("hot dogging" or any Satriani-esque shredding is absolutely not part of the deal). Get a good singer (the more banshee-like the croon, the better). Make sure hair is long (stringy, a plus) and invest in denim wardrobe if band does not already own it. Develop fascination with dark side of the Summer of Love (Altamont, Mansons, etc.) and the occult. Write a crop of songs. The songs should closely resemble each other—your fan base will be stoked about this—and in the spirit of the genre, each song should essentially be a riff. Or, maybe each song is more of a strip mine, set up around a churning, repetitious riff, with bridges, choruses and lyrics and all the rest.

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And if you think I'm damning them with faint praise, I'm not at all. They are intentionally and carefully following a formula and delivering a strong product. On albums like last year's Night Creeper, the band has provided a near perfect execution of what a lot of folks really want from their music. Sonically it's loaded with great vintage sounds, fuzz tones and flawless recording. I struggle a little to get terribly excited for this kind of music, but I like Sabbath enough to give their children a decent chance on the stage.

Uncle Acid play the Top Hat Wed., Sept 21. Doors at 7 PM, show at 8. $18/$16 advance.

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