Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Atomic Regulators - Hi There!dotdotdot
artworkAs unusual as it sounds, the bass is the most creative and original of the instruments. This set of tracks gets good marks for promise, and low marks for delivery. It's like a demo too early in a band's evolution to have the chemistry and arranging necessary to make it all work, yet it's clear that there is potentially very cool material here.
Picks: Creeper 1, It Came From Planet Q, El Pistolero, Big Kahuna, Nekkid Torpedo, Monkey On A Stick, Tarantula

Track by Track Review


Creeper 1 dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

A dark bass line and ringing chords bring on a minor surfable riff with fairly dry tone. The main riff is intriguing, but the arrangement and recording are not up to showcasing it in its best light. Plenty of potential, and an interesting idea.

It Came From Planet Q dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Melancholy chords and string swipes, along with a very cool bass line. The melody riff is underdeveloped and is sans the liquid flow required for guitar instrumentals.

Scorpio dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

On the faster side, "Scorpio" depends on a circular rock riff that's just too predictable. That said, it surely could be fleshed out to work well, though the jammy break is a nonstarter.

El Pistolero dotdotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Deceptively starting from soft knob fade in notes, "El Pistolero" evolves into a very cool Spanish number with a structure suggestive of The Torpedoes' "Spanish Mane," but a lot slower and easier. This is my personal fave among these tracks. It has lots of potential as well, should The Atomic Regulators find it in their hearts to record and mix this more professionally. It's a wonderful idea.

Dos Coleros dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"Dos Coleros" is mostly punky chord progressions. A rough glissando doesn't add enough to make the grade, though the melody line is nicely written.

Mister Wolf dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

This is thick and dark. Its chord domination is very unsurf, but the glissandos create the illusion of the coast. I suspect if this was arranged for two guitars, it would work much better.

Big Kahuna dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

The chord progression here is quite endearing. "Big Kahuna" has a warm sunny air about it despite the heavy chording and distortion. A few surf whammy chords add a coastal disturbance edge. I like where this seems to be going.

Nekkid Torpedo dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"Nekkid Torpedo" is a bluesy, jammy, and fairly unstructured rock instro. Occasional modern surf chords and what seem to be Mermen influences make it's future interesting.

Monkey On A Stick dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

"Monkey On A Stick" has an attractive progression and easy lilt about it that make it endearing. While not well developed, its basic structure and melody show promise.

Tarantula dotdotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

A cool rolling drum beat and very moody bass line create a brilliant bed on which an interesting riff idea rides. Still in its infancy, the melody is more jammy than it should be, but the promise is there.

Smurf Surf dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

A happy, almost hippy opening chord progression presents a grin and a sunny afternoon. After that, "Smurf Surf" seems like a back track, or perhaps it lies in wait of a second guitar.