Los Straitjackets Transcend the Novelty

Los Straitjackets
Greg Allen

Fans of Los Straitjackets may have first come for the novelty, but they’ve stayed for the sound — a furious instrumental assault of twangy surf, hard rockabilly, and psychedelic garage.

Oh, the Nashville band still sports the Mexican wrestler masks and Chuck Taylors, and it still knows a marketing angle. (Can you say “a wipe-out instrumental cover of ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ ”?) But despite being packaged with luchador trading cards, the shtick takes a back seat on 2009’s The Further Adventures of Los Straitjackets, a dozen two-minute instrumentals (and one 3:43 epic) that scream by like Link Wray jet-fueled for a one-fourth-mile primitive-rock showdown. If you can’t dance to Los Straitjackets, get out of the way, or prepare to be surf-punk body-slammed.

Check out one of Los Straitjackets' tunes on Crossfade, New Times’ music blog,

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