A brief album review in a 1989 issue of Circus magazine, of all places, described Dallas' Buck Pets as a cross between Guns N Roses and Mudhoney...or was it the Sex Pistols and Mudhoney? One of those two I think. Anyway, it was enough for me to run to the nearest Sam Goodys to buy their 1989 debut LP, The Buck Pets, on Island Records. They epitomized so much of what I was looking for in a great rock and roll band - some punk, a little grunge, '80s indie rock (think early Soul Asylum), but in contradiction to the aforementioned Circus review, definitely not metal. Though a little unaccomplished and rough around the edges, The Pets offered a humble charisma not dissimilar to The Replacements. And like the Replacements, they knew when to serve a scalding cup of Joe, and conversely, when to wax contemplatively. Check out their first album's "Iron Cock," and "A Little Murder," respectively to see what I mean.
That album made a huge impression on me. I can still remember how stoked I was a couple years later when I found an original nine-song Buck Pets demo tape, that served as a precursor to the album, in an alleyway record shop in Schenectady, New York. Independently released in 1987, I'm assuming this is what sealed the deal with Island Records, if only for the fact that five songs (tracks 1, 4, 6, 7, and 9) were recorded for The Buck Pets. "Some Hesitation" wound up on the second Buck Pets album, Mercurotones, and the remaining three cuts are exclusive to this tape. To get a real appreciation of these demos, hearing the first Buck Pets album at the very least would behoove you, but if this is/was your first exposure to the band it's a highly convincing introduction nonetheless.
In 1990, The Pets follow-up, Mercurotones came and went with little fanfare. Uprooted from Island shortly thereafter, their third and final album, To The Quick, surfaced in 1993 on Restless Records, and that was about it. Do yourself a favor and check out The Buck Pets fansite Worldwide Smile for historical info and links to post-Buck Pets projects, particularly those involving BP lead singer Chris Savage.
01. Song for Louise Post
03. Other People
04. Hammer Valentine
05. Some Hesitation
07. A Little Murder
09. Funny That Way
Drive Like Jehu - Demo - Label: self released Year: 1990 If you were to make a list of the "Best Bands of the 1990's" (and honestly...what kind of nerd would have the time to do ...
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