Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA 3 Balls Of Fire - The Men With Burning Guitars
|This cassette was released in 1991. 10 listed tracks plus a bonus secret track. While the cover art is the basis of the 10th anniversary release, this is entirely different. "Burning Guitars" is a vocal in the jazz-spy tradition with lyrics all about 3 Balls Of Fire. |
Picks: Out Of Limits, Risin' Surf, Black Out!, Chicks On Choppers, Rage, Surf Rider, Kind Of Green, El Malpais, Let There Be Curly, Atom Smasher
Track by Track Review
3 Balls Of Fire bring "Out Of Limits" out of the shrill shine of the Mar-Kets' original and into the harsh light of gutsy guitar. Different enough to be interesting and stand on it's own. Excellent cover!
Richard Podolor's impeccable "Rising Surf" is nicely done. It rises from the sounds of the sea lapping the shore. It's a fluid version of this fine song, with a gentle yet gutsy sound. Mike Vernon's cactus jazz approach adds a romantic Spanish feel to the song. Excellent!
Slowly fading into a Memphis styled bluesy Steve Cropper sorta thing seems well received by the spirited audience enjoying the "Hole In The Wall" atmosphere and soulful playing.
Kinda shiny, sorta tuff, verging on jazzy, "Chicks On Choppers" becomes an aggressive song with a real solid beat and rhythmic chop. Obviously a hit with the punters.
"Rage" is a big track with the intensity and edge of the Big Guitars From Texas. Rock solid and aggressive, with great drums and pumpin' bass under firebrand guitar work. Excellent!
Nokie Edwards' classic "Spudnik" is arranged like a dry version of the Lively Ones' liquid cover. Very pretty, with warmth and a desert surf feel.
"Kind Of Green" is a sinewy, slithery strip-joint slow-tease torture kinda groove. A beautiful and sultry track, with bluesy, almost liquid guitar work. Mighty moody!
Over time, "El Malpais" has gotten bigger and more twisted. This is the earliest recording of this adventurous song that probably best foretells of the direction 3 Balls Of Fire would take in later years. A fine song with grit and edge, played mid tempo cool with guts and dementia.
"Let There Be Curly" is really a cover of Sandy Nelson's hit "Let There Be Drums." Solid drum work throughout the track keeps it very credible. The bass rumbles and thunders, and the guitar plays the required subdued roll, accenting the drums. Excellent!
"Atom Smasher" is an unlisted 11th track on the cassette. It's a cool song rising from the blues with a bit of a sixties jam feel, and a soulful beat. Nice track.