The Live Ones – “Dirtweed” b/w “Don’t Look Down”

The Live Ones - "Dirtweed" b/w "Don't Look Down"

The Live Ones - "Dirtweed" b/w "Don't Look Down"

Drummer-singer Mike Czekaj, formerly of Fuzztone, and his guitar playing brother Jon Czekaj, take good old fashioned scuzz rock for a spin on their recently released 7″ under the Lives Ones moniker. New York City has long been a haven for three chord garage rock, and the Czekaj siblings clearly have this shit running through their veins. It’s fast and raw, and probably just the way you like it.

A-side “Dirtweed” is lo-fi scuzz rock at its finest. This song is the kind of sweaty, beer soaked mayhem fans of this style expect. If “Dirtweed”‘s yell-along chorus doesn’t get your fist pumping then you’re must be one of those who thinks rock n’ roll is dead. Shame on you. 

“Don’t Look Down” has a kick ass guitar intro that sets a bit of an ominous tone. This lower rumble makes me think of Texas based Dixie Witch – and not just for the similarity of having a singing drummer. This track is more sludgy than scuzzy, and reminds me that there will always be room for bands like this.

In both instances the songs retain a decidedly lo-fi — or is that low budget? — feel. Mike Czekaj’s vocals are aren’t great. It’s almost as though you’re standing outside the bar listening to the Live Ones play. I’m not entirely sure if this is completely intentional, or just a byproduct of the vinyl. Either way, it works just fine with down n’ dirty garage rock.

The Live Ones certainly won’t be anyone’s hip band of the year, but this duo will surely find some new fans among those who just enjoy straight up garage rock and its incredible ability to soothe the work-a-day soul.