Tenderloin, Bullseye- Joe Silva

With all due deference to Toto and his master, Kansas can be a fairly off kilter locale. Williams S. Burroughs aside, venturing into the somewhat tranquil town of Lawrence, Kansas, one doesn't expect to come across a lit up marquee with a band roster that features the likes of the sonically caustic (and probably now forgotten..) Kill Whitey. But it happens. And therefore it makes sense that Tenderloin can gravitate there as well - gathering en mass to put together a few pounds of serious American and not quite rockabilly-ish clatter.

Leaning towards the school that encompasses the good Reverend Horton Heat (the band bears several ties to that camp) the Buttholes, Mojo Nixon, the Allmans and possibly Geoge Thorogood, Tenderloin is the band you expect to find drowning out the WWF match on the big screen at the bar you come across when wandering the back roads of Alabama.

A one-time Sub Pop release of "Supernatural Bolonga" initially drew interest, but Bullseye is not quite hit the mark material. The The guitars are done in stainless steel (yawn) distortion, undercut by double bass drum thumps and splashes of vaguely processed harmonica lines.

Ernie Locke country growls atop what sometimes collapses into a down home rumble ("Hearty Beef Party") and generic 4/4 riff working ("Alabama Hammer"). But there are moments when Tenderloin almost gets it back in order despite Locke. "Mystified" is a salvaged moment, but it fades quickly. "Inseminator" tries to pull a Twin Peaks/Doors spookyness, but the psuedo-darkness can't be upheld despite what turns out to be Locke's best moment on mouth organ.

Musically and otherwise, one's better off with one foot in the Rev. Heat camp and the other in the Motorhead realm. As a band that attempts to straddle the breach between the two, Tenderloin are best left to stew a while longer.


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