What I've Been Listening To: Cute Lepers' Hooky Sophomore Record, Smart Accessories

This past Sunday I paid a visit to the venerable punk playground Singles Going Steady, where the generous and staggeringly knowledgable store owner Chris Hamer gifted me with the Cute Lepers' 2nd album, Smart Accessories, on vinyl.

Hamer helped fund the release of Smart Accessories -- "Once I heard the album, it was a no brainer," he told me. The album was released last December on 1-2-3-4-Go! Records, but it's better late than never, right?

Smart Accessories has smashing cool artwork, and the songs are everything perfect pop-punk should be -- in the style of Stiff Little Fingers or the Buzzcocks (which whom they've toured), it's snarky, hooky, with melodies that bounce off the walls and guitar riffs that drive, push, and shove everything forward. It hasn't much left my record player since I brought it home on Sunday night. I can't even express how rocking it sounds coming out of my speakers, turned up extra loud. I'm pretty sure I've inadvertently my neighbors hate the Cute Lepers.

You can go to the band's MySpace page to hear a couple songs, including Smart Accessories' spirited lead single, "Berlin Girls," but if you're any kind of vinyl collector, I'd recommend you hustle on down to Singles Going Steady and pick up a copy.

The Cute Lepers are playing the Funhouse this Saturday, November 13. The show starts at 0:30 and tickets are $7.

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