Oakland's Phenomenauts produce an energetic mash of '80s dance beats -- fueled by the sci-fi sound of the theremin, the primitive synthesizer favored by early prog rockers -- and rockabilly thrash. They have the energy of the Clash, the party vibe of the B-52's and the merchandising savvy of Devo, but the influences are jammed together in a way that makes everything here sound strikingly new. The music virtually leaps off the disc with its soaring energy, sharp wit and invigorating musicianship; you'll be singing along after a single listen. "Giant Asteroid" is a driving tune balanced between spaghetti Western twang and skate-punk clamor, "Gravity" and "Hurry Let's Go" show the band's rockabilly rage at its most extreme, full of piss and bluster, while "Welcome Back" drops a bit of doo-wop into the mix, a move that could even win converts from the ranks of the band's grandparents.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene each week with music news, trends, artist interviews and concert listings. We'll also send you special ticket offers and music deals.