Album Review

Original Sinners - Self-Titled

Original Sinners - self-titled

You might not remember much of Exene Cervenka's post-X output, which hewed toward spoken word albums and obscure one-offs such as the DJ Bonebrake collaboration Auntie Christ, and that might be just as well. Her first record with her new group, Original Sinners, is the first thing Cervenka has done since X that's truly worth hearing, mostly because it sounds just like her old band. A rollicking punkabilly outing with its tongue lodged firmly in its cheek and its heart lodged firmly in 1983, Original Sinners is a boisterous mixture of rock 'n' roll, cowpunk and surf rock. Bolstered by a capable and energetic crew that includes former members of the Distillers, Cervenka caterwauls her way through the album with her usual aplomb. She offers up wryly clever lyrics that will surprise no one who ever heard "Your Phone's Off The Hook But You're Not", as well as pervasive aura of nostalgia that she probably can't help. Fans of X will find a comforting familiarity in tracks such as the marvelous opener "Bird And Bees" and "One Too Many Lies", perhaps too much so: It's surely no accident that Original Sinners guitarist Jason Edge contributes a harmony vocal to the album's best track, "Whiskey For Supper", that sounds so much like John Doe, it almost feels like cheating.