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The Cramps: Songs the Lord Taught Us

Barney Hoskyns, Rock's Backpages, 1997

THE CRAMPS GOT away with their Z-movie, zombie-rock schtick because they were so intense in their conviction that it had more value than middlebrow humanist pop. Descending on Memphis to cut their debut album with Big Star legend Alex Chilton, the band served up a thirteen-song punkabilly testament to drive-in anti-culture, replete with garage-band guitars and booming voodoo drums. Versions of ‘Fever’, ‘Strychnine,’ and the Johnny Burnette Trio's ‘Tear It Up’ competed with Lux Interior-Poison Ivy originals like ‘T.V. Set’ and ‘I Was a Teenage Werewolf.’ Songs the Lord Taught Us was also the first and last Cramps album to feature scary-looking guitarist Bryan Gregory.

Total word count of piece: 107

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