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Nashville Pussy - "From Hell To Texas - Live And Loud In Europe" (CD)

Nashville Pussy - "From Hell To Texas - Live And Loud In Europe" CD cover image

"From Hell To Texas - Live And Loud In Europe" track listing:

CD 1:
1. From Hell To Texas
2. Drunk Driving Man
3. Ain't Your Business
4. I'm So High
5. Late Great USA
6. Speed Machine
7. Dead Men Can't Get Drunk
8. Why Why Why
9. Lazy Jesus
10. Stone Cold Down
11. Pray For The Devil
12. Give Me A Hit Before I Go

CD 2:
1. Say Something Nasty
2. From Hell To Texas
3. Ain't Your Business
4. Piece Of Ass
5. Come On, Come On
6. Hate And Whiskey
7. Late Great USA
8. I'm So High
9. Struttin' Cock
10. Snake Eyes
11. I'm The Man
12. Why Why Why
13. The Bitch Just Kicked Me Out
14. Drunk Driving Man
15. Go Motherfucker Go
16. Goin' Down

Reviewed by on May 24, 2012

"The star throughout is guitarist Ruyter Suys, whose ax-work owes a lot to Angus Young, Ted Nugent and Johnny Ramone, in pretty much that order."

True to form, there are plenty of tasty licks on Nashville Pussy's "From Hell To Texas - Live And Loud In Europe," but some questionable production on the studio disc robs some of them of their power. Fortunately, the bonus live disc makes up for those missteps, with a healthy dose of crowd energy and better sound.

The star throughout is guitarist Ruyter Suys, whose ax-work owes a lot to Angus Young, Ted Nugent and Johnny Ramone, in pretty much that order. Stuff like "Dead Men Can't Get Drunk" on the first disc, a remixed, resequenced version of the band's 2009 album, "From Hell To Texas," shows her ability to switch between styles on a dime, as the speedy, punk-fueled verses give way to a more AC/DC-inspired style in the solo. She's also quite excellent on the bluesy boogie of "Lazy Jesus" (which features a quick vocal cameo from Lemmy Kilmister — as the voice of God, appropriately enough!).

There are also some great grooves on "Give Me A Hit Before I Go" and "Pray For The Devil," which features an excellent change of tempo in the middle, with an almost Skynrd-style ending. Those looking for something a little glammier will enjoy the Poison-style singalong of "Why Why Why," which asks the immortal question "Did I shave my balls for this?"

Singer-guitarist Blaine Cartwright's vocals are definitely an acquired taste, but I have to say the almost Alice Cooper tone he uses on "Give Me A Hit Before I Go" works well, as does the gravelly Lemmy-style vocal on "Ain't Your Business."

Unfortunately, the sound quality is quite tinny, which means that bassist Karen Cuda basically disappears from the mix entirely, while Jeremy Thompson's drums are robbed of a lot of their heft. The end result is that some of the songs feel a bit like demo recordings rather than an actual album. I like AC/DC's "Let There Be Rock" as much as the next guy, but there is such a thing as going too raw, production-wise.

Things get much better on "Live And Loud In Europe," with "Say Something Nasty" getting the crowd fired up to fever pitch in a way that's almost reminiscent of AC/DC's "Live Wire."

Sure it's raw, with the occasional burst of feedback to prove it, but a greater amount of bass makes all the difference when it comes to propelling the song forward. I'll take the live version of "From Hell To Texas" over the version that appears on the studio disc any day, even though Suys' guitar is a little less prevalent on the live one. Ditto for "Late Great USA."

Other highlights on the live disc include "Go Motherfucker Go" and "The Bitch Just Kicked Me Out," which have a great singalong quality to them. On the other hand, tunes like "I'm So High" (which features Cartwright singing about wanting to "take a shit on the moon") and the braggadocio of "I'm The Man" don't really add a lot.

All in all, those looking for balls-out rock could do a lot worse than Nashville Pussy's "From Hell To Texas - Live And Loud In Europe." Production quibbles aside, there's quite a bit of excellent guitar work, even when the songs fall a bit on the silly side.

Highs: Great guitar work throughout, with "Give Me A Hit Before I Go", "Dead Men Can't Get Drunk" and "Lazy Jesus" standing out.

Lows: Tinny production on the studio disc robs some of the songs of heft.

Bottom line: The band's brand of balls-out rawk is better-served on the live bonus disc than the studio album.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)