Home > Bargain > The Shods – Bamboozled, Jilted, Hornswoggled & Hoodwinked

The Shods – Bamboozled, Jilted, Hornswoggled & Hoodwinked

Poorhouse Records, 1998

So say you and the band just figured out that you’re going with the clean cut with suits look to dress sharp for shows.  One guy says he wants to wear shades and you let him, because he wants to be some kinda personality.  Then SOME KID just skateboards by during a band photo and spray paints the vulgar phrase “dossh” on your brand new suits.  Sure, the kid can’t spell ‘douche’ correctly, but the guy with the shades gets a sharp idea and tells the other guys to rearrange themselves.  Voila, the band name is born.  This is what really happened.  No, I’m lying.

The Shods absolutely represent that Boston bar band that would make for a great time out on a Friday night.  One wouldn’t even have to be drunk, but as it tends to be the case, drunkenness makes songs sound better than they really are.  So, back to the Shods.  They’re a rousing quartet that have veritably perfected a song list that anyone with a sense of rhythm (and a minimum level of quick criticism) will swing to.

This strength of the Shods is immediately apparent on the opening track of “I Know a Place”.  With the raspy, energetic vocals of Kevin Stevenson, “I Know a Place” has the quick pace, the edge, and the singalong chorus including some “Oh AH OH!”s to get a crowd riled up.  This song is so catchy I’m actually sick of it.  However, I have an unfortunate criticism level so I’m sure if this were released as a single these days it would take off.  It’s this catchy quality that make the Shods successful for the rest of the record.

One can tell that the Shods knew to keep the singalong aspect going to get some fans involved.  “Lucky” has a chorus that includes a few “yeah yeah yeah” bits, whereas “No Good No Fun” has a title that not only gets sung along but also is infused with a few preemptive “hey hey hey hey”s from the band.  One really would have a hard time resisting their efforts to provoke enthusiasm.

Most songs on the record are of good quality, but there are a few missteps as one can always expect from bands (unless they’re named Led Zeppelin).  Stevenson’s delivery of verses from “Musta Been Drunk” is much too similar to “I Know a Place”, and even though the chorus is completely different it still rings a bit awkward for the discerning listener.  “Rock and Roll Manifesto” could have been a great blast out for the record that was full of rockin’ combustion, but instead it kind of strolls out.  It doesn’t help that one can kind of hear a sound that may be record scratching, as if from a DJ, throughout the entire four minute song.  Perhaps this was their attempt at a cool swagger track, but it falls short.

The Shods can be listened to on their MySpace page, which includes that “I Know a Place” song.  Their website is up, but it’s looking rather out of date.

I think this record is a bargain for what I got it for because, despite its age, it still comes across as a very good rock record.  When one is practically spending nothing and keeping expectations low as a result, it’s a relief when something like this ends up in your possession.  The Shods don’t appear to be in action anymore if one is to judge by the state of their website, but it was good to read that they were still performing music a decade after this release.  Perhaps, if they are up for a reunion of sorts, one can expect some solid rock ‘n roll from these guys again.

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