We've been hearing some of these songs for a few years now: "Ginger," "1771." But they're coated with new grease for the Cyril Lords' full-length No Fun debut, and Motherland ends up being a real good time. It's cranked to efficiency. The herky two- and three-minute blasts of three-piece impatience emphasize Marty "Mother" Morris' torn tinfoil guitar tone, but leave room for the rhythm section too. And it really is great to hear a trio act like one. Incessant overdubs? No thanks. Sure, Hentchmen John Szymanski (organ on "Ginger" and the quiet closer, "Say Your Prayers") and Tim Purrier (the uncorked guitar solo in the Sights-ish "Through the Looking Glass") stop by. But Motherland as its title suggests is Marty and his band's full-time show. The abandon of 1960s garage rock tingles in "Amy Would," the stinging "Modest Man" and that other old favorite "Stupid Things"; the Cyril Lords give each a scraggly hoodlum grace, and Mother's lyrics are funny, sarcastically vengeful and surprisingly self-critical. The record wouldn't work if girls and booze were its only passions, so Cyril Lords tie the scratchy kinetics of their influences to their own hardscrabble lives. And Motherland rocks honestly.
Johnny Loftus writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.