- Released: June 4, 2001
- Label: Surfdog Records Ada
Q - 8/01, p.1403 stars out of 5
- "...A return to the sawn-off, souped-up, proto-rockabilly sounds which launched his career....Primetime jukebox fodder for this or any other decade."
- 2.5 Years, 4 Months, 3 Days
- 3.Hell Bent
- 4.Hot Rod Girl
- 7.Rooster Rock
- 8.Santa Rosa Rita
- 9.Johnny Kool (Part 2), (The Legend Of)
- 10.Get 'Em On The Ropes
- 11.Who Would Love This Car But Me?
- 12.Blue Cafe
Full performer name: Brian Setzer '68 Comeback Special.
Brian Setzer '68 Comeback Special: Brian Setzer (vocals, gutiar); Mark W. Winchester (upright bass); Bernie Dresel (drums).
Additional personnel: The Brianaires (background vocals).
Recorded at The Village Recorder, Los Angeles, California.
Regardless of how much credit you give Slim Jim Phantom and Lee Rocker for the Stray Cats' conception, this is probably the closest thing to a new Stray Cats album as you'll ever see again. It's the first time since that band broke up that Brian Setzer has ventured into guitar-bass-drums rockabilly trio format. One major difference between this group--whose name comes from a legendary televised Elvis Presley concert--and the Cats is the extent to which Setzer's guitar is featured. On song after song he peels off blistering licks with a sharpness that puts him in a league with any other rock & roll guitarist you can name.
Most of the tunes here are jumping rockabilly numbers that will bring a shiver of delight to nostalgic Stray Cats fans. On "5 Years, 4 Months, 3 Days," Setzer even employs a narrative approach that compares admirably to Dave Alvin's work with the Blasters. The only times the album falters are when Setzer tries to stretch the mold too far, as on the introspective "'59" or the faux-Mexican "Santa Rosa Rita." But those gaffes are quickly forgotten in the face of chargers like "Who Could Love This Car But Me" (co-written with none other than Joe Strummer) and the punchy "Get 'Em on the Ropes," which achieves an admirable synthesis of Carl Perkins, the Ramones, and NRBQ (kids, don't try this at home).