From the opening notes of Indianapolis, I was home. With a trans-punk sound that calls both Patti Smith and the Stooges to mind, Gasoline Silver lays out a perfect driving punk feel. Their low-fi vibe finds its own voice by adding in a bit of retro synth and drums that sound more machine than man. Then they finish out the first chorus and pull out a harmonica. Okay, so it's not really traditional. My foot is tapping along and doesn't care.
They mix it up more, throwing in a few bluesy folk rock pieces, like the Dylanesque The Wild Farewell. This one's got a little When I Paint My Masterpiece kind of feel. This time, the harmonica is no surprise at all. It flows out smoothly, with the expected metaphor laden lyrics.
Band leader Ron Franklin has a strong sense of the sound he wants, sometimes shifting genres, but always staying true to an uncomplicated structure and presentation for the songs.
Still, the post punk drive is what grabs my ear. It's All Over But the Cryin' crosses Roky Erikson with the Cramps. Simple choppy guitars, reverb soaked vocals, and absolutely no frills. Miss Cape Canaveral has a stripped down feel that sounds a little like Romeo Void.
Gasoline Silver is due out August 10. Until then, you can hear a few of their tracks on their site and cleanse your aural palate. While you're at it, find yourself an unassuming amber ale (Odell's Levity comes to mind).