Creem Circus – Rock/or Roll (Rating 4 out of 5)
When a group bills themselves as your favorite bands favorite band, and their self-proclaimed mantra is “we play hard, glitter, tandem lead, platform powered Rock and Roll with a lot of boogie down soul,” and to add to all of that you name yourselves after two iconic 70’s Glam/Rock and Roll magazines, Creem and Circus, you better have the musical chops to back it up. And these guys have them, in spades.
If you don’t like taking a ride on the Glam and Glitter David Bowie meets Slade and The Bay City Rollers train you might as well skip this stop. Just checking out some of the song titles and you know there is some high voltage fun in store for your ears. “Rock and Roll Decree,” “Rock and Roll Band,” “Riff Mountain,” and “Rock and/or Roll” are all lathered in Coolness.
The opener “Rock and Roll Decree” is Sweet meets Kiss, only better, “Turn Me Out” has a scent of Billy Squire, and Teenage Rules carries a bit of early Kinks, but is Bay City Rollers to its core. “Rock and Roll Band (revisited)” owes a lot to it’s similarly named cousin, carries the same riff in places, but sonically sounds more like the bastard child of Thin Lizzy and T Rex.
It makes sense that the guitar work is stellar here with Chris DiPinto of the Philadelphia based DiPinto Electric Guitars and Basses, and Jim Cara who also makes bass guitars for Gene Simmons leading the twin axe attack. The title track “Rock and/or Roll” is to much Kiss for those non members, and “Riff Mountain” is just that, a large dose of stellar riff-alicious Rock and Roll.
With Creem Circus coming from the same city as Low Cut Connie, The City of Brotherly Love seems to be a hot-bed for bands that are mining the past and digging up nuggets of pure fun.