From the Vault...


Reverend Horton Heat
"Liquor In The Front"

© Sub-Pop/Interscope Reco Year of Release: 1994

track listing
  • Big Sky
  • Baddest Of The Bad
  • One Time For Me
  • Five-O Ford
  • In Your Wildest Dreams
  • Yeah Right
  • Cruisin' For A Bruisin'
  • I Could Get Used To It
  • Liquor Beer And Wine
  • I Can't Surf
  • Jezebel
  • Rockin' Dog
  • The Entertainer

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    "Liquor In The Front"

    The Reverend Horton Heat is an experience. Picture the rockabilly style, as in the Stray Cats/Brian Setzer, and mix it with punk, and you get a unique sound. The rockabilly guitars stand out, and they have a more rougher edge. Heat's 1994 release, Liquor In The Front should alert the punk fans to take attention, where mixing two sources of musical styles results in a unique sound.

    "Big Sky" kicks off the album, and being an instrumental, it's like such surf guitarists such as Dick Dale and Duane Eddy are revved up on a more heavier and faster paced style. It then blends into "Baddest Of The Bad," where it keeps the hard driving rockabilly beat, crashed into a fast paced punk style -- loud, fast, and its amazing how the band keeps up the rhythm.

    "One Time For Us" is a bit mysterious, and has a more punk style, where "Five-O Ford" could be an interesting song for Brian Setzer, just take this song and speed it up 200% -- it's another fast-paced song, mixing the rockabilly sound, and you could imagine the Commander Cody song "Hot Rod Lincoln," just speeded up way too fast.

    Slowing things down rhythmically, "In Your Wildest Dreams" could be mistaken as a Brian Setzer Orchestra song. Heat's voice is unmistakingly alike to Setzer's, as well as the musical style. This one is a standout, and if anyone is a fan of Setzer, this one will definitely be well-liked.

    "Yeah, Right" returns back to a more upbeat style, having a sound more like rockabilly, yet with a much rougher edge. Speed-thrash punk/metal best describes "Cruisin' With A Bruisin'," combining rockabilly. A more rockabilly-Stray Cats-Setzer style is heard on "I Can Get Used To It." "Liquor, Beer And Wine" can also be mistaken for Brian Setzer vocally, for it has more a more older Country sound.

    The instrumental "I Can't Surf" has the surf guitar sound with a harder rock approach; it's loud, thrashy and unique. "Jezebel" is another Setzer comparison, not having a harder edge in sound, and its amazing how Heat's voice sounds alike to Setzer's. "Rockin' Dog" is just that, it's a great rockabilly rockin' number, and can easily be compared to Setzer. "The Entertainer" is a remake of the same tune from The Sting movie soundtrack, yet it's much different than the original, being more of a parody song, with mistakes while playing the piano.

    Liquor In The Front has a strong comparison to Brian Setzer's music, and has the punkness of The Cramps. Rockabilly on speed best describes most songs on this release, where others have the traditional rockabilly sound. It's an interesting experience to see how rockabilly and punk can be combined, giving a unique sound for the Reverend. Not being an avid follower of Heat's music, I'm just curious to see if other Heat albums are in the same style. On some songs you would swear it was that of the Brian Setzer Orchestra, or even the Stray Cats. Rockabilly fans should enjoy this one, especially if they appreciate punk rock music.

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    Previous Review: #835
    Garth Brooks--In Pieces
    Next Review: #837
    Whitney Houston--I'm Your Baby Tonight