Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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  • Transplants [Hellcat, 2002] A
  • Haunted Cities [La Salle/Atlantic, 2005] **

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Transplants [Hellcat, 2002]
Power passion speed--there can't be any new way to configure those old saws around guitar-bass-drums, can there? Only then there is. Hardcore punk and hardcore ska join mook metal, hip hop criminal-mindedness, and the occasional rap element to form a music whose intense focus is absolutely punk and just about unprecedented. Rancid guitarist Tim Armstrong and Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker are the masterminds, previously unrecorded hanger-on Rob Aston the singer who added lyrics and meaning. Aston sounds like the young Shane MacGowan and writes as both a drug-dealing scumbag and a street person on a mission. He could be either, or both. He could have juiced a memorable one-off or a definitive classic. A

Haunted Cities [La Salle/Atlantic, 2005]
Gangsta punk revisited, broader musically and narrower lyrically ("Gangsters and Thugs," "Crash and Burn"). **