Mustang Lightning
"Texas Voodoo Surf"

(Self-Released 2005)Mustang Lightning - Texas Voodoo Surf

Legendary and now, sadly, late guitar player Link Wray was quick to accuse Nirvana of having ripped off his instrumental guitar riffs. It is clear that garage and punk evolved from those 50s rock sounds but rarely do you hear the genres played closely together, let alone performed on the same album. With some production assistance from Big Star's Alex Chilton and a guest appearance from Barry Cowsill -- who recently died in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina -- on bass, Mustang Lightning's "Texas Voodoo Surf" is rough garage and grunge, with vocals that snarl like Mudhoney's Mark Arm and tight guitar driven instrumentals.

As an homage to greats like Wray and Dick Dale, Mustang Lightning make tracks like the lively "Jack Ball," "Haunted House," where the band hoots and hollers wildly, and the steady classic sounding "Guitaro" rock in the traditional sense. Guitars click like Link Wray's "Run Chicken Run" on the album's title track, a bright and crisp instrumental song. Elsewhere, Mustang Lightning opt for a punk sound as horse whinnies on the speeding "Fightnin Mustangs" is every high school's answer to a "cool" anthem while the guitar riffs drive the gritty "Cattle Mutalation" and vocals from Lightning's Phil Deville are sneered and full of attitude.

Mustang Lightning reminds you, in case you have somehow forgotten, just how fun and interesting surf instrumentals are. Showcasing their obvious influences, Mustang Lightning's "Texas Voodoo Surf" is not always the most original. But the band's focused sound is tight. The tracks of "Texas Voodoo Surf" work together, cohesively, to present an album that would be ideal for those late night parties.

B-

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