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Thee Emergency

Can You Dig It?

(Blue Disguise; US: 13 Jun 2006; UK: Available as import)

Dita's a girl and she's a singer... but she's not a girl singer, got it?

Women who front tough-assed garage bands—like the Detroit Cobras, the Demolition Doll Rods, the Paybacks and now Thee Emergency—sometimes overcompensate, ditching Iggy’s vulnerability in search of his raw power.  That’s why it’s heartening that Dita Vox displays more than an on-off switch in Thee Emergency’s debut album.  She can wail with the best of them—as on the Ventures-riffed “Revolution #1” or the MC5-9sh fury of “Holdin’ On”.  Still she’s just as good, maybe better, when required to smoulder, as in the album-making title track or the down-tempo “Sweat Sex”.  She may have even spent some time in Sunday school, given the piano-chorded, sax-embellished stateliness of “Condemnation”, and its gospelly hidden track.  The band is as tight as Saturday night requires—churning out firey guitar licks and pogo-tempo’d rockers—but the songs a little derivative.  I hear more than a hint of the Stones’ “Start Me Up” in “Sugar” and a “House of the Rising Sun”-ish swagger in “Cream”.  Regardless, though, there’s charisma and talent to spare here, and Dita’s just getting started.

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