The Clutters are Nashville’s answer to the Ramones. Their anthems, power-chord punchy and usually dispatched in three minutes or less, are similarly full of choruses memorable if only for their simplicity. Take, for instance, Don’t Believe a Word‘s “Rockaway”—both its title and its “Hey, hey” refrain can’t help but evoke you-know-who; meanwhile, the Clutters’ evident distaste for segues and slow songs, a bias first flaunted on their 2005 debut T&C, is Ramonesian to the core. One major difference, though: This particular quartet features two females, one on big-beat, cymbal-heavy drums and the other on Farfisa, a toy-sounding keyboard that adds nuance to the band’s blitzkrieg bop. And while singer-guitarist Doug Lehmann’s nasally voice at times recalls Frank Black, echoes of the B-52’s are evident when he and his mate on bass harmonize with the girls, as on opener “9999 (Ways to Hate Us)” or “Radio,” whose chant “We stole/We stole the radio” makes you hope they never give it back.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on May 22, 2007