The Plimsouls
Live! Beg Borrow & Steal
October 31, 1981 - Whisky

Release Date: February 23, 2010
Produced by: N/A
Format: CD



Adam Jahnke


Even by the volatile standards of rock and roll, The Plimsouls were a relatively short-lived band.  They released only two albums before breaking up in 1983, only one of those, Everywhere At Once, for a major label.  The band never quite made it big, so if you’re familiar with them primarily from the use of their songs “A Million Miles Away”, “Oldest Story In The World”, and “Everywhere At Once” in the cult comedy Valley Girl, you can probably be forgiven.  But in Los Angeles, the band was a local favorite, developing a reputation as one of the best live acts in town.  In 1988, a live album called One Night In America was released that offered a taste of how good they could be.  Now, a live recording made at the Whisky A Go Go on Halloween 1981 has finally been pulled from the vaults to prove beyond any doubt that this band could rock with the best of them.

The Plimsouls’ power-guitar sound fit in well with the early 80s and while this album definitely takes you back to 1981, it remarkably doesn’t sound in the least bit dated.  A lot of credit for that goes to Peter Case’s powerful voice and the controlled but thrashing guitar of Case and Eddie Munoz.  The band is tight but not too tight.  There’s none of the overproduced synth-sound that dooms so many 80s bands to nostalgia acts.  The rhythm section of drummer Lou Ramirez and bass player Dave Pahoa keep things sounding organic throughout. 

At this point in their career, the band only had one album to their credit.  It’s no surprise that they run through a fair amount of material from that record, including great renditions of “Zero Hour” and “Hush Hush”.  The band also runs through a few tracks that would appear on their second album, such as “Shaky City” and a powerhouse version of “A Million Miles Away”.  The set wraps up with a run of great covers, from The Kinks’ “Come On Now” to “Dizzy Miss Lizzy”.  They’re joined on “New Orleans” and “Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey!” by The Fleshtones, amping things up to a raucous, exuberant level.  If you missed out on The Plimsouls’ heyday, Live! Beg, Borrow & Steal is a terrific introduction to the band’s hard-driving sound.  If you’re already a fan, it’s a welcome reminder of how much they’re missed. 









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212 Frech

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