Record Preview: New Flesh Eaters Album, ‘I Used To Be Pretty’ Has Plenty of Bite

Flesh Eaters I Used to Be Pretty - Courtesy image
Flesh Eaters I Used to Be Pretty - Courtesy image

By DONNA BALANCIA

The Flesh Eaters sound better than ever and are looking good too with the new album I Used to Be Pretty. 

Dave Alvin, John Doe, DJ Bonebrake, Bill Bateman, Steve Berlin and Chris D got together to make their first new music in 35 years. It’s a grizzled, well-loved crew of rockabilly punks who have put together a record with a super mod yet classic sound. 

I Used To Be Pretty by The Flesh Eaters could be the best record of the year. As the 11-song album is getting an early 2019 release (Jan. 18), so far it’s the titleholder. If previews count for anything, the LP is comprised of some of the best music heard during all of 2018.

I Used to be Pretty (Yep Roc Records) takes some classic Flesh Eaters tunes and gives an update to bring out the best of the renowned 1970s-’80s Los Angeles punk scene sound. The Flesh Eaters are among the early punks that came out of The Masque in 1977. Anyone who was around in the day has a special appreciation for the music.

The Flesh Eaters are touring and will play The Echoplex on Saturday, Jan. 19. Mudhoney opens.

Flesh Eaters album art - Courtesy image
Flesh Eaters album art – Courtesy image

Heavy Hitters of West Coast Punk

These musicians are the heavy hitters. The Flesh Eaters are comprised of frontman and legendary songwriter-poet Chris D, guitarist Alvin and drummer Bateman of The Blasters, Doe (bass) and Bonebrake (percussion) of X, and Berlin (sax) of Los Lobos.

They form a complex group of longtime colleagues and friends. As creatives with a new sound often encounter, the early going was particularly challenging. But all the years later — together and apart from each other — the band members continue to draw fans across all ages.

The music on I Used to be Pretty was recorded a few decades ago but is almost more appropriate for today. The songs hold up well and new studio technology enhances extremely tight musicianship. It’s a blend of upbeat rockers and straight ahead punk tunes that get the listener thinking. Favorites are “Miss Muerte” “Pony Dress” and “My Life To Live.”

Sonics cover “Cinderella” is The Flesh Eaters’ first video off I Used To Be Pretty. The second is “My Life To Live,” an updated recording of the song that originally appeared on their 1982 album Forever Came Today (Slash).

CaliforniaRocker.com rating  –  🎸 🎸 🎸 🎸 🎸 – Five guitars out of five

I Used to be Pretty

1. Black Temptation
2. House Amidst Thickets
3. My Life to Live
4. The Green Manalishi
5. Miss Muerte
6. The Youngest Profession
7. Cinderella
8. Pony Dress
9. The Wedding Dice
10. She’s Like Heroin to Me
11. Ghost Cave Lament

For more information enter The Flesh Eaters website.

Check out My Life To Live here:

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