Starcrawler personify the vintage rock'n'roll dream: four high school friends working L.A, gigs and earning a record deal. It's a tale as old as the Whiskey a Go Go, and much like the club itself, Starcrawler are far from polished. They are raw, have attitude and strut with brazen impunity. For all their unabashed posturing, they could very well be the millennial Stooges; they've certainly got the demeanour.
Working with Ryan Adams at his Pax-Am studio, Starcrawler's eponymous ten-track debut was recorded on analogue tape — surprising, given that most of the band have just finished high school. But the bygone recording medium fits their style, which is justified by their substance.
Starcrawler sets the tone with "Train," a short intro track that previews all the crunchy guitars and bombastic drums to come, all while announcing "train pulling in." The foursome proceed to move through an almost curated list of mid- to late '70s rock subgenres, from stoner metal on "Chicken Woman," to glam on "Let Her Be," and bluesy Runaways-inspired punk on "Pussy Tower."
There's nothing truly radical about the collection, but it is gratifying riff-based rock, and in an industry littered with sycophants, Starcrawler's brand of exuberant noise is refreshing. The future may be bright for these young guns. (Rough Trade)