Friday, July 25, 2008


Man, by the time this came out I was such a gone CLAW HAMMER fan they could’ve put out a one-sided lathe cut spoken word 45 and I’d have pronounced it a masterpiece. Good thing they kept putting out stunning 7-inch singles containing rock and roll music instead. This one, their third, from mid-1989, was one of the earliest Sympathy For The Record Industry 45s, a label that at least early on shared a strong affinity for the garage-based LA blues common to bands like the Lazy Cowgirls, Crawlspace (mach 1), and Claw Hammer. CLAW HAMMER were getting a little more dirty at this point, I thought, with two mid-tempo songs and no hard chargers like the previous 45, “Sick Fish Belly Up” or “Car Down Again” from their first single. The band that recorded this one is definitely more in a BEEFHEART camp than an MC5 camp, I suppose, and more resembled the debut LP that would come in the following year - but it also could’ve just been song selection. Vocalist Jon Wahl is in top vocal caterwauling form on “Drop”, and I totally love the abrupt punch-out that ends this song. What a great band. Check out and - hey, why don’t you just go ahead and download the first single here and the second single here?

Play or Download CLAW HAMMER – “Candle Opera” (A-side)
Play or Download CLAW HAMMER – “Drop” (B-side)


Anonymous said...

Since no one has has commented, I will.
Awesome band, great record.

Anonymous said...

Jesus effin...where is the comprehensive remastered and expanded box set already? The Vertical Records crew (e.g., Sebadoh, Cop Shoot Cop, Suckdog, Royal Trux, Heather's Overbite, et al) just loved Clawhammer all to pieces out there in Western Massachusetts. Was jonezin’ for this just last week. Thanks.


Anonymous said...

singer sounds a lot like Chris D. on Candle Opera