Pillbox’s sleaze rock classic from 1993 is on vinyl for the first time. Included in the release are demos long thought lost,   Demos remastered by Rich Jones, and this issue comes in a gatefold jacket with updated original artwork and contains new liner notes from frontman Chris Barry! and not having played this album for many years when I turned the dial I couldn’t understand why it hasn’t been played for a while with those wild Dolls meets the snottiness of Steve Jones courtesy of Ratboy on the geeta. Hacking and slashing like the best of them from the opener of ‘Get Hip’ through the rough and ready beauty of ‘Holly’ it’s a veritable masterclass in sleazy punk n roll.


If you’re looking for bedfellows then I’d say the likes of the Sea Hags and maybe a dash of ‘Done With Mirrors’ Aerosmith would be the kinda ballpark Pillbox rolled with but I guess New York also had The Throbs, D Gen, and NY Loose. These band soaked up their surroundings like sponges and poured the spirit into their song like ‘Sister Caroline’ and its dark and brooding vibe,  as it swirls in a cloud of cigarette smoke in a crowded after-hours speakeasy as Barry leads the band through the choppy waters to a triumphant chorus that kicks serious backside and if anything has aged wonderfully well since 93.


‘Jimbo’s Clown Room’ was originally released in 1993 on CD via the small NYC imprint Circumstantial, so it’s cool that Yeah Right! has seen fit to resurrect this bad boy on vinyl.


I love the mix on this record it really captured the uniqueness of what was happening on the east coast in the early 90s with other hopefuls like The Throbs or the majestic D Generation who were cut from the same cloth.  The big phat bass thumping along in the engine room creating a big sound but not a polished one which is what I loved about it back in the 90s and even more so now.

There is a great ebb and flow to the album and it’s a  shame they only lasted the one record with this lineup but from the cool chords on the opener ‘Get Hip’ to the clattering rush of ‘5000 Miles’ you’d be foolish to pass up owning this record. Live fast and die young like so many other bands they felt the tsunami of grunge yet remained a cool underground classic for Rock n Roll vampires who refused to accept the changing of the guard and knew there would be a resurgence for quality dirty, loud, sleazy Rock n Roll.   It’s cool to hear this record expanded with the four additional tracks that are added, two on the record and two via the Bandcamp app. Long live Pillbox and remember to socially distance when inside Jimbo’s Clown Room.

It’s a limited run so don’t snooze because you wouldn’t want to miss out on this beaut.


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Author: Dom Daley