Whole Lotta Goddamn
The 4th CD from Chicago's CATS & JAMMERS combines 60's garage-pop with frenetic 70's punk energy and 80's new wave. Serious issues such as mortality, government conspiracies, guns, mind-control and propaganda are balanced with humorous anecdotes of public intoxication, women's professional tennis, and Charlton Heston. The collection ends with an anthem murder (power) ballad. From BabySue 'Combining the sound of The Buzzcocks with early Young Fresh Fellows, the fellows in Chicago's Cats & Jammers keep getting better and better. Scott Anthony, Addison Monroe, and Paul Medrano play simple three piece rock music that is highly reminiscent of bands from the early to mid-1980s. The songs are short and to-the-point and feature wonderfully insightful lyrics that are often hilarious. The band's melodies and hooks are what ultimately rule, however...as songs are the strongest link here. Whole Lotta Goddamn features smart, effervescent tunes that would make Scott McCaughey proud. The guys in this band play with such sincere youthful enthusiasm and excitement that it's almost impossible not to love them. Fun memorable cuts include 'Rock and Roll Invasion,' 'Will I Die Young?', 'Propaganda Slaves,' and 'Stabitty Stabitty Stab Stab Stab.' (Rating: 5/6) From James McQuiston, Editor, NeuFutur and InterStitial Magazines 'There are so many nods to the earlier nineties version of pop punk music in Cats and Jammers' first track on 'Whole Lotta Goddamn' that one almost feels as if they are listening to 'Dookie' all over again. The only thing that really distinguishes Cats and Jammers from the rest of the acts out there is more of an appreciation for the sixties rock that would eventually filter down to pop punk via The Ramones. Further tracks, such as 'Will I Die Young?' seem to have a veneer to them that looks much more towards alt-rock than the pop punk opening to 'Whole Lotta Goddamn'. The one major tie that both these styles of tracks have is that Cats and Jammers infuse them with a tremendously catchy poppiness that will keep resonating in listeners' ears well after the disc ends. A middle ground is finally reached with tracks like 'Evil Alien Hoax', which still snaps with a punk bite but is in a realm completely it's own. The echoing vocals present during 'Evil Alien Hoax' gives Cats & Jammers a body during the track that pushes them even closer to greatness. At thirty five minutes, Cats & Jammers push through their agenda in record time; if someone blinks, they are going to be sadly disappointed. The band's maturity allows them to say volumes in each and every song; when the band throws in something completely unexpected (the odd backing noises during 'Propaganda Slaves'), this only increases their stock in my eyes. What results during 'Whole Lotta Goddamn' is a band that traipses easily through a number of linked style in the creation of a different style that never fails to stay interesting. The simple fact that Cats & Jammers can start with a very Knack like sound on their 'Lips That I Miss', throw in a little Husker Du and Pinhead Gunpowder, and still infuse the track with their own essence (specifically through Scott's vocals) should be impressive enough to shock listeners into purchasing this album. Almost ten years have passed since the band coalesced into the entity that one hears on 'Whole Lotta Goddamn'; with first 'Propose Toast' and then 'Whole Lotta Goddamn', one has to think that Cats & Jammers' time is now. Here's to hoping their star starts shooting upward like they deserve, and that the average music fan will gain an appreciation for Cats & Jammers that is long overdue.' "I proclaim Cats and Jammers pure fun." --Beverly Durfee, Grand Junction Sentinel "Pumping rhythms, coupled with a few basic chords result in tunes that are immediate and invigorating. Not only is the tenor playful, but the lyrics are embedded with humor...the [songs] bounce and bop with acres of catchy hooks that are impossible to ignore. Excellent, excellent, excellent.' --Beverly Paterson, Twist and Shake "...horribly infectious and will bore into your skull and lay eggs and make you want to listen to it over and over. It is good stuff.' -- Mackenzie Pause, Impact Press.