Agony Shorthand

Thursday, January 29, 2004
THE CONDAS “The Bird” / SPARK PLUGS “Chicken” 45…..Part of Norton Records’ no-picture-sleeve 50s/60s reissue series, in which one unsung, deranged clod-hopper is paired with one unissued, deranged screamer. In this case, the unissued killer is THE CONDAS’ “The Bird” – a honking, drunken frat bash hooter that sounds very Northwest (Tacoma/Seattle, a la the “Wolf Call” CD and all the other gems that Norton have brought to life again). It’s so raw & sloshed that it makes the Trashmen sound like pipe-smoking sophisticates. The flip, well, remember when THE CRAMPS’ “A Date With Elvis” LP came out in 1985 and you were super let down & disappointed, expect for, as you often said to your friends, “…except for ‘Chicken’…”? Well, here’s the gonzo, full-band original, straight out of the Hasil Adkins school of southern-style cluck rock. Love it, and without exception thusfar, this Norton 45 series has really been first rate.