Nicky Kay and His Fabulous Kay-Tones - Go Crazy, Pop!
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Go Crazy, Pop! (Atom, 2005)

Nicky Kay and His Fabulous Kay-Tones

Reviewed by Ken Burke

Musically infectious and danceable to the core, the Ohio-based Nicky Kay & his Fabulous Kay-Tones have crafted a strong 12-song set of swing-edged rockabilly, rock 'n' roll with shades of honky tonk. A clever songwriter, leader Nicky Kay's vocals chops are just a cut above ordinary. Yet his rampant energy and enthusiasm ("Too Late to Be True") goads the crack combo into some truly exciting moments.

Stylistically, Kay and crew capably embrace the intimate western swing of Big Sandy & his Fly-Rite Boys ("Let's Rush It!") and catchy Deke Dickerson-flavored hook-songs ("Baby I Get Sad and Lonely Too"). Demonstrating tasty live-off-the-floor production skills, they even touch upon steel-guitar enhanced country ("The Shame") with a smart barroom beat ("Dance Dance Dance").

Drummer Brian Hoeflich and back-up vocalist Maery Lanahan add pleasing shades of jazz and country, respectively. However, this band's secret weapon is lead guitarist Joe Tritchsler, whose brilliant mastery on Speedy West-influenced instrumentals ("Twin Commencement," "Ultrabilly Boogie"), along with the Gene Vincent ("Tear My World Apart") and Johnny Burnette-fed rockers ("Rockin' Epidemic"), fills every available moment with genuine excitement. The result is a very fresh sounding debut by a promising group with loads of sonic chemistry. (Box 514, Dayton, OH 45409)

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