Monday, January 17, 2005

Testors - Complete Recordings 1976-1979

If you have an extra $15 in your pockets and don't already own the Testors Complete Recordings 1976-1979 2xCD then I urge you to splurge now. It's just that good. This falls under the category of found music for me. A year ago I had no clue about the Testors or frontman Sonny Vincent. I mean, until recently the only remainder of the band was a lone single from 1980. Apparently there was a great deal more in the vault, as the past couple of years have seen a couple of releases, with Swami's double disc tieing it all together.

I won't give you the whole Sonny Vincent/Testors story - you can find that here. In short, the Testors were active players in the NYC punk scene in the late 70's. Musically they were akin to the Dead Boys and the Heartbreakers which is no great stretch. I'm not going to comment on the "importance" of the band in comparison to their NYC cohorts - someone else will do that. I know I personally prefer the Testors sound to that of many of their late 70's New York brethren, but that's just me going on music alone

As for the music itself, welll it just right through the speakers. Disc 1 has some early studio tracks and live tracks that just bleed with intensity. Rough, raw sounds (from 2 guitars and a drummer - no bass ) and tough, desperate vocals from Mr. Vincent. Even the live stuff is solid (and I'm not a fan of live recordings). Standouts include "You Don't Break My Heart", "I See", "Stall" and "Aw Maw". Great riffs and guitar freakouts abound.

Testors - You Don't Break My Heart.mp3
Testors - Hey You.mp3

Disc 2 contains the bands 1980 single ("Time is Mine"/"Together") and an unreleased album recorded in 1979. The addition of a bass player and better recording gives these songs a nice pop edge without losing the toughness. Highlights: "Time is Mine", "Sick Of Yesterday" "Greedy Fuckers", just to name a few

Testors - Sick of Yesterday.mp3
Testors - Break it Down.mp3

- some live mp3's of Sonny Vincent backed with Rocket From the Crypt on the Swami download page
- Sonny Vincent's homepage
- This guy didn't like the Testors or the reissue. Here's a positive review for balance
- Froogle listings for Complete Recordings 1976 -1979
- It looks like McG still has a Testors mp3 up ("Time is Mine"), along with lots of other cool shit