There is something completely refreshing and honest about a band that is unconcerned with being hip; a band that doesn’t dress in the latest styles or have trendy haircuts. A band that lets the music speak for everything. The Compulsions are all of the above. You know what we’re talkin’ about? These guys just rock.
Dirty Fun is an album filled with the kind of music one would expect walking into a gritty dive bar and seeing, in the words of their song House Of Rock, “a band throwing down onstage.” Lead vocalist/rhythm guitarist Rob Carlyle wrote the songs based on his personal experience in the big bad world of rock & roll, and his vocal delivery speaks volumes. Hellbound Babies and House Of Rock will be instantly familiar to anyone who’s ever played in a band and struggled with surly club owners and inattentive audiences. The entire cast of characters are well represented, from the band not getting paid, a bar fight, “a big black bouncer in the doorway” and “Bon Scott rocking on the juke box.” Livin’ the dream, right?
The Feel is a song with an undeniably…well…cool vibe. It tells the story of a legendary bar band that had everything except fame. Carlyle chants the line “they were the coolest band in the world” over and over in almost a whisper while lead guitarist Richard Fortus adds eerie fills.
Lest one think the album is all darkness and despair, Lucky is a fine, upbeat tune with a Keith Richards-inspired guitar riff. I Still Got The Hots For You Baby is pure rockabilly heat, while Stay Easy is a song with a breezy, almost New Country feel.
The phrase “dirty fun” is a contradiction. Dirty is usually a negative term, while fun is obviously positive. In that regard, the title of this album is perfect. Dirty Fun is irresistibly dangerous—or maybe dangerously irresistible.