By Rebecca Bulnes
By Lee Zimmerman
By Rebecca Bulnes
By S. Pajot
By S. Pajot, Liz Tracy, Kat Bein, & Sean Levisman
By Kat Bein
By Ashley Rogers
How do four degenerate punksters from the dengue-infested swamps of South Florida sign with über-cool German indie Crazy Love Records? The old-fashioned way: hard work and a little luck. With individual influences steeped in jazz, metal, punk, and rockabilly, as well as a shared passion for broads and B flicks, the Van Orsdels have significantly refined their bare-bones psychobilly approach since 2003's Ain't Life a Drag?EP. On Miami Morgue Riot! the bandmates push their sound to its limit in an attempt to represent the cultural and sonic hodgepodge of their influences.
This eclecticism works because it's a true reflection of the diversity that makes this city dynamic. Off the aforementioned album, "Evil" is retooled under the magic of studio time, and the horror ode sounds ten times better. New tracks like "Coming for You" and "Dancing Devils" serve as a breakneck psycho cadence and a fine forum for Todd's guitar work to rip an authoritative tear in the sonic lining, dripping with vodou echo and Eighties metal tinges. On midtempo numbers like "Little Zombie Girl" and "Hey, Hey," the rhythm section displays its jazz training with contrabassist Bruno's laying a deep groove under drummer Dick's sensitive machine gun of metal/punk speeds and soft snare/hi-hat backgrounds.
George, a veteran of the Miami scene and once a drummer for the infamous Fuck Boyz, throws himself fully into the vocal work, hitting highs and lows accordingly with an impeccable sense of timing that jells the thirteen tracks into one succinct effort. With beautiful cover art penned by macabre illustrator Gris Grimly (www.madcreator.com), the Van Orsdels' first full-length is a well-realized endeavor and a proud accomplishment by four individuals who've arrived at the crossroads of Miami and know how to read each other's creative impulses.