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Tiger Army, ‘Music From Regions Beyond’ (Hellcat)

Tiger Army practically invented modern American psychobilly — that rousing, darkly romantic amalgam of punk and rockabilly — but their fourth album is a schizophrenic inversion of everything that made the genre fun. Instead of breakneck strumming, the Los Angeles trio two-steps into pinched new wave (“As the Cold Rain Falls”). Instead of acrobatic howling, singer Nick 13 adopts suave bilingual crooning (“Hechizo De Amor”). And instead of spiraling feedback and surf-rock swoons, we get the audibly neutered, crossover radio hit “Forever Fades Away,” with its stadium-rock reverb, indifferent staccato guitar, and feebly warbled narratives of self-destruction. Greasers, beware: Now the ’50s really are over.

Now Hear This: Tiger Army – “Afterworld” DOWNLOAD MP3