The Quakes - The Quakes (Cover Artwork)

The Quakes

The Quakes (1988)


Before there were psychobilly bands such as Tiger Army, Koffin Kats, and the Slanderin in the United States, there was a band called the Quakes from Buffalo, New York. They formed in 1986 and are one of the first American psychobilly bands, if not the first, to ever play that style of music in America.

The Quakes relocated to England in 1987 after not being able to find an audience who accepted their style of music and they were quickly signed to Nervous Records, who released this, their debut self-titled album, in 1988. The album artwork completely rips off the Stray Cats' first album cover, only instead of a band with greasy pompadours you get a band sporting greasy quiffs and with a more evil look to them. Unlike the UK psychobilly bands at the time, the Quakes played really fast and had a more thrashier sound to their music and the speed that they play at is astonishing for a band who played the style.

The album opens up with "Pack Our Bags and Go" and Paul Roman's Gretsch just squeals throughout the whole song and will remain screeching throughout the album. Rob's slapping of the upright bass is insane and only a snare drum and a cymbal is used throughout the recording. The album just blasts through one song after the other at a blazing speed. Some of the standout tracks on the album are "Where Did It Go," "You're Dead," "Where Did It Go," "Psycho Attack," "Psychobilly Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" and "1,000 Kats."

This is just a classic psychobilly release and if it wasn't for the Quakes, who knows if the U.S. would have had its own psychobilly scene. This album is considered a must-have for any true psychobilly fans. The band is still going strong today, so definitely catch them live when they come to a town near you.