Reviewed by Christopher Gray, Fri., Oct. 1, 1999
Freerange BastardsCut down in their sweaty, dilated-pupil prime last year by principal songwriter Jesse Brooks' abrupt move to Chicago, the Freerange Bastards belong to the ages now, but not before leaving this CD in their wake. A 10-song, 26-minute ode to being young and getting wasted, Freerange Bastards packs the swagger of an extended Cuervo bender and hits with all the force of the next day's hangover. Self-explanatory song titles like "Load a Bowl of Rock & Roll," "Raw Son of a Bitch," and "I Like My Cocaine in the Morning, Heroin at Night" say it all in the musical language of KISS, the Dead Kennedys, and the Reverend Horton Heat. The band goes Budokan on "Fulltime Nurse" (which was actually recorded live in Tokyo), gets Slayer-rific on "Salem Waters," and displays an admirable set of country chops on "If Drinkin' Was a Payin' Job" ("... I'd get a got-damn raise"). So even though they've gone to that big Cinema West in the sky, the damage is already done, and the legend of the Freerange Bastards will reverberate wherever fledgling Central Texas bands gather to watch pro rasslin', eat pork rinds, and kill Pabst Blue Ribbons by the case. Saaaah-lud!