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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Do the Vampire

Superdrag was one of those great bands that made a handful of great albums regardless of production value. Granted, their The Fabulous 8-Track Sound of Superdrag EP suffers from muddy sound quality and less-than-sublime songwriting, but things got much better after that.

Regretfully Your's is a solid collection of tunes, including their MTV Buzz Bin hit, "Sucked Out." Recalling Cheap Trick and My Bloody Valentine in spots, Superdrag was honing in on some great adrenalized jangle-pop.

Probably thanks to the financial success of Regretfully Your's, Head Trip in Every Key had more production dollars behind it. In return, the album is big, warm and rocks even harder. Showcasing one of the best "roomy" drum sounds I've heard on record (along with Jimmy Eat World's Clarity), Head Trip is another collection of great tracks.

For whatever reasons, Head Trip in Every Key didn't sell like hotcakes, thus delaying the release of Superdrag's third record, In the Valley of Dying Stars. Released in 2000 on the smaller, Arena Rock Recording Co. label, In the Valley is less polished and more fuzzy, but still really cooks.

What may end up being their final bow, Last Call for Vitriol is a really lo-fi record (for Superdrag standards), but once again, the songs are great. I've never been a fan of Don Coffey's drums sounding like they're in a closet on this record, but there is a lot more to marvel with this record. Songs like "Baby Goes to 11," "The Staggering Genius" and "Remain Yer Strange" are some highlights.

I don't know if the band is on permanent hiatus or not, but frontman John Davis recently released a solo record, while Superdrag's members are busy with other projects. There has been talk of a Superdrag b-sides record for a few years, but I don't think anything has materialized.

This post may be preaching to the choir with Superdrag fans, but after listening to my old mix CD made up of songs from Superdrag's first three albums prompted me to write a little reminder.

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