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The Filth and the Fury

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Jun 2, 2006 6:25PM

2006_06_riverboatgamblers.jpg We enjoy hot and sweaty rock and/or roll which is why we readily admit we’re rabid fans of The Riverboat Gamblers. Watching their live show is akin to playing a frenzied game of Addams Family pinball on speed. Singer Mike Wiebe takes his cues from James Newell Osterberg, Jr., copping all of his best moves sans cliché or ironic intent, and sets the blender to crush/kill/destroy.

The band's first album was a cauldron of hotblast songs only occasionally bogged down with something so frivolous as melody. There were brief moments where a hook would push through the fury and sideswipe us with its brilliance, and we found ourselves wondering what a whole album of hooks tempered by these cats would sound like.

Well, we got our wish. And while we’re sure there are a number of haters out there that would accuse the band of selling out its punk rock credo for commercial viability we’re tickled pink by this development. The group has lost none of its frenzy, none of its punk rock attitude and none of its acidic attack. However they have only strengthened their attack by adding cleaner production values, more tuneful vocals and songs that take a little more time to hit their point than a bullet train. Moments hinted at on their Something To Crow About like “Ice Water” and “Sparks & Shots” are expanded upon and bettered on the new disc To the Confusion Of Our Enemies. Plus, how can anyone argue with a band that writes a super-catchy ditty and then has the balls to title said tune “The Biz Loves Sluts.” Awesomeness, no?

We’re looking forward to downing a fair amount of bourbon at The Note tonight when The Riverboat Gamblers storm the stage and blow out the soundboard. We think you’d be a sucker to miss this chance to witness the rock and/or roll fervor in all its unadulterated glory.