Hepcat - Right On Time (Cover Artwork)


Hepcat: Right On TimeRight On Time (1997)
Hellcat Records

Reviewer Rating: 5
User Rating:

Contributed by: ChrisGorman2Chris Gorman
(others by this writer | submit your own)

In one sense, I am glad ska blew up in the mainstream, because it helped to introduce me to bands like the group I am currently reviewing. On the other hand, I find myself pretty angry, as the saturation of ska had negative effects as well. For one, people tend to think that RBF and LTJ are the ep.
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In one sense, I am glad ska blew up in the mainstream, because it helped to introduce me to bands like the group I am currently reviewing. On the other hand, I find myself pretty angry, as the saturation of ska had negative effects as well. For one, people tend to think that RBF and LTJ are the epitome of ska, and that if you don't like those bands, then you don't like ska, period.

Bands as skilled as Hepcat are few and far between. HC don't play 3rd wave ska-punk-pop. They don't have the marching band horn section, they don't have the frantic upbeats or the power chords, and they sing about topics that don't include beer and sex. Instead, Hepcat are directly influenced by the ska of the late 50's and early 60's Jamaica. Their 3 vocalists ( Greg Lee, Desmond Berry and Alex Desert) provide exceptional harmonies throughout this disc. Each piece of music is carefully planned out, and executed smoothly. The horns don't blast, but rather they melt easily into the overall sound, carrying the melody instead of forcing it. The rest of the band follows suit, making for an incredible listening experience.

Some of the standout tracks include upbeat tunes like "I Can't Wait", "No Worries", and "Rudies All Around". On the slower side, check out "Goodbye Street", "Mama Used to Say", and "Baby Blues". The best part about this CD is that it can appeal to so many kinds of people, beyond the average ska fan. This CD is a hit with reggea fans, punk fans and R&B fans.

I highly recommend this CD, even if you aren't a fan of ska. Im willing to bet that most people have a certain perception of ska music that may or may not include the likes of Hepcat. Forget your RX Bandits and your Buck-0-9 for the moment...this is as close as most any band in the 3rd wave has come to authentic ska. Along with the Slackers, The Dave Hillyard Rocksteady 7 and others, Hepcat are helping ska save face. I like RBF as much as the next guy, I love them in fact, but sometimes, you gotta take it down a notch, and thats why Hepcat is so perfect.


People who liked this also liked:
The Clash - London CallingSamiam - AstrayBad Brains - Bad BrainsBuck-O-Nine - 28 TeethJawbreaker - 24 Hour Revenge TherapyThe Pogues - Essential PoguesPolar Bear Club - Sometimes Things Just DisappearFlogging Molly - SwaggerDescendents - Milo Goes To CollegeHot Water Music - Caution

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (October 18, 2004)

THAT is trad. ska music! wonderful! a record for my full life...

travis (December 8, 2001)

yah. alex desert is on the tv show becker right now. and he was on boy meets world back in the day. thats why he left hepcat before they recorded "push n shove." he didnt want to give up his acting career when it was going pretty well.

StevieSaintPaul (December 8, 2001)

Something I didn't know about Hepcat until some smarter asshole friend of mine told me two years ago: Singer Alex Desert was actually in a few films, like Doug Liman's Swingers, then again with John Favreau in PCU and along side with John Cusak in High Fidelity. I also seen that motherfucker in one of those pointless beach gameshows on E! . Oh yea, Hepcat. Well Hepcat is the shit.

Anonymous (December 5, 2001)

So groovy. It doesn't get much better than this.

Anonymous (December 4, 2001)

how bout them bears???

CallingLondon (December 4, 2001)

what's with this sudden rush of ska reviews?

Soven (December 4, 2001)

I've got to agree with this score, Hepcat are amazing. I especially like their 3 instrumentals ("Tommy's Song", "Pharaoh's Dream" "Baby Blues"), and "Nigel".

travis (December 4, 2001)

thank you for reviewing this cd. im going to review their older stuff this week. its too bad hepcat broke up. ive seen them live 8 times, and it is always amazing.

Anonymous (December 4, 2001)

The real stuff... These guys do it right
and they do it with style.... Only the slackers come close----oldpunker.

Anonymous (December 3, 2001)

Hepcat owns...get their older stuff as well....some fuckin fantastic music that just about any music lover should like....same with the awesomeness that is the slackers...

I also love the new rx bandits record and love LTJ....they all owe influences to earlier ska and reggae such as dessmond dekker, the skatalites, toots ect....seriously, everyone should by a toots and the maytals cd while they're checkin out Hepcat...

Ska is still great....yes it is...


Anonymous (December 3, 2001)

oh yes, for those of you who don't know, i detest Reel Big Fish and i really wish they would break up and quit playing music all together.- fathead

sickboi (December 3, 2001)

Hepcat owns all those silly band's asses. Please don't compare them to RBF (even in a remote sense). Thank you.

Anonymous (December 3, 2001)

one of the best ska bands out there, second only to the Slackers, in my opinion. it's plain ol feel good music that'll pu a smile on your face.good review too.- fathead

Anonymous (December 3, 2001)

Hepcat is even better live.

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