Unsurprisingly, this entire LP plays at 45 rpm. Frankly, the only thing that would make more sense were it to be a 78. We loved that last release from The Shirks. Their “Cry Cry Cry” single was a monster, but this self-titled LP is pure pedal to the floor rock ‘n’ roll. The whole thing is fuzzed-out, blown-speaker fury, and it is an intense ride.
Thankfully, it’s also a short ride — the Shirks’ style of rock ‘n’ roll, played as it is at 500 miles an hour, can seem like you’re riding shotgun with a madman at the wheel. It’s exciting, it’s exhilarating, and it makes you feel more alive than you thought possible, but you’re ready for a cup of tea and a lie-down when it’s all over.
“Cry Cry Cry” single
Did somebody distill all my favorite 7-inches into one potent platter of punk rock punchiness? If nothing else, it takes massive balls to entitle a song “Cry Cry Cry” and go nowhere near a Johnny Cash reference. The Shirks may very well be the heirs apparent to groups like New Bomb Turks and Gas Huffer. It’s thrilling, dirty, punk-inflected garage that rolls along like a hot rod.
Granted, it’s nothing new. The Marked Men do it well, as do the Hex Dispensers and Beat Beat Beat. Is the Washington D.C. group rocking it just as well as those groups? Fuck, yes. The Shirks know how to write a scuzzy number. You’d be waving your beer around and slopping everyone in your vicinity if you heard these tunes live. This 7-inch will blast by, and you’ll flip it over and throw it on again. And again.
MP3: the Shirks, “Cry Cry Cry”