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The Thingz: The ThingzThe Thingz (2004)
Reviewer Rating: 3
Contributed by: JiveSideJiveSide
(others by this writer | submit your own)
Personality goes a long, long way in rock and roll. In fact, personality is sometimes the only thing that goes anywhere, especially in the punk rock arena. That being said, where Long Beach’s The Thingz falter in technical skill they more than make up for it with some unabashedly dorky chutzpah, and that’s what this Cramps-inspired beach rock is all about. It’s not that the playing is bad on this record, it’s just nothing extraordinary and there are plenty of mistakes within the trio; dropped rhythms, wishy-washy feel, and a sour note here and there in the singing, but the performances are energetic and the mistakes are embraced with an amicable charm. The subject matter is minimal and silly, ineffective on such songs as “Manicotti Massacre” and “Wine Country Safari” but wonderfully fun in “Chicken in a Graveyard” and “Mastication Blues”, yet they never quite get silly enough. But these are acceptable mistakes for a first release when a band has an air about them that smells like promise. And while The Thingz may not have huge sales or a great legacy ahead of them, a band doesn’t need either of these to be good at what they do and have that something be interesting. Personality goes a long way, and the combined personalities of Kimthing (bass, vocals), Mike Morris (guitar, vocals), and Pat (drums) is a big, fun band that has the potential to give a lot of people of great night out.
The Thingz are fun and, well, that’s pretty much the motto here. Warm tones, chunky guitars, some big harmonic ideas, some garage rhythms, some goofy lyrics and voila! serve in a dark and smoky basement. You won’t find any answers in this music, but you’ll certainly find some dancing fools having a grand ol’ time. “Don’t know from whence we came/Don’t know what is our game/Don’t know who to blame/We have fun just the same/We are The Thingz, Thingz, Thingz!” Yes they are.
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