The Doughboys, Act Your Rage

Posted on September 23, 2010 by

Artist: The Doughboys
Title: Act Your Rage
Label: Ram Records 08-01
Released: January 2010
Genre: Rock / Garage Rock

Three of these band members cut a couple singles in Jersey in the 60s before they split up. Thirty–some odd years later, they regroup with a couple of new members and sound like they’re still in 1965.

When they cover the Kinks, they chose the cut, “It’s Alright.” It’s an early Kinks cut, more reminiscent of blues-based garage rock than the overtly English band they’d become. Lead singer Myke Scavone draws from the American blues from which it’s based, following the direction of Mick Jagger rather than Ray Davies. When he belts a ballad, like “Carmalina,” (the track I keep listening to over and over) he’s closer to Peter Wolf on the Geils’ debut album. On “Nobody’s Girl,” Scavone could be any of the lead vocalists on the first Nuggets collection.

What Scavone doesn’t sound like, is the lead singer of Ram Jam, the 70s band with the heavy version of Leadbelly’s “Black Betty;” which was produced by the bubblegum entrepreneurs, Kasanatz-Katz. But in truth, he was the pipes behind that song. Don’t let information influence your opinion of the band though. It’s just a bit of minutia, just like the fact that drummer Richie Heyman is the same person as power-pop performer, Richard X. Heyman.

The album lags for four songs midway through. “Queen City” is straight-forward barroom rock, as is “12 Bars and I Still Have the Blues,” but they sound like something that might show up on a Bob Seger rarities collection. “Early Warning Wake Up Call” sounds more like an arena anthem and lacks the raw intimacy that most of the other cuts the CD delivers. “Desperate Delusion,” drops the names, Rodgers & Hammerstein and Jane Austen among others, that just don’t seem to cut it in my garage of rock.

But Scavone and the boys get back on track with the rave-up, “I’m Not Your Man,” which falls somewhere between the Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin. “Wishful Thinking” should make Tom Petty envious. The album closes with a cover of the Moody Blues, “Tuesday Afternoon,” a version that resembles the ‘what if the Moody Blues’ stayed true to their early R&B roots and forgot about all that bullshit orchestration?’

The only thing new to the band has to offer is that they do it right. Many of these throwback bands get the image and the proper gear, but it all sounds forced or over produced. The Doughboys experienced it and they still can play it. They sound honest. I’ve never seen them live, but if they ever come to town, I’m first in line.

It’s just four songs too long. Otherwise I’d give it an A.

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