The Quakes; Negative charge. A song by song review with Paul Roman


Negative charge is the brand new album by The Quakes, their 8th studio recording and one of the psychobilly main events of the 2009 year.

Published on March, 9th, the album sound is a trip through the different ages of The Quakes, from their early hardcore mixture of psychobilly with punk, to the 80’s neo-billy and all the stuff they recorded in between.

All songs were recorded from August 2008 to January 2009, produced by N. Ole Pauli and Paul himself, mixed and mastered by Pauli and Byron Filson at Villain Recording Studios in Phoenix, Arizona. The final result is a nice production that sometimes sends you back to the first record by the band.

Paul, on guitar and vocals, is flanked by the current Quakes line up, Kenny Hill on slap bass and Juan Carlos on drums. Besides, there are some guest musicians, noticeably on “Straight to Valhalla”, with Jeff Roffredo on Bass and James Meza on drums, both from Tiger Army.

The album, that comes as a digipack with a pull out booklet including the lyrics and liner notes, is available right now on The Quakes web site, and it is being shipped to iTunes store and all usual distributors of psychobilly music.

Negative charge. A Song by song review with Paul Roman

As Paul Roman promised us in a previous interview, the album won’t disappoint any Quakes fan. It has a very classic psychobilly sound and at least half of the songs are quite related with their early material.

Last song “Everything must die” contains a classic Quakes guitar trick; they double track the acoustic guitar and the resulting sound is similar to a Rickenbacker. “Turn on you tomorrow” is another classic shot of The Quakes; mixing psychobilly with Beatles choruses. “Spirit of the cat” is the most rockabilly of all tracks.

We asked Paul Roman his own thoughts on each song. This is what he told us;

1. Seven seas alone – This is an ode to all the great rockabilly pirate songs such as Marie Celeste by the Polecats and Captain blood by Beltaine fire (the Blue cats) and others.

2. Spirit of the cat – Just a song about guys who get older and forget about cat music.

3. Negative charge – This is me:-)

4. Master planned community – About suburban walled off cities.

5. Ghost town – A generic song about following your dreams.

6. Time wasters – Inspired by guys who have been in my band at one time;-)

7. Ready for a war – About being the ”only cat in town” a reflection of my youth. This song sounds to me like it could have been on Voice of America.

8. Turn on you tomorrow – This is my favorite. This is the Beatles meets Gene Vincent.

9. Straight to Valhalla – Most of this song was 20 years old. I needed a real psychobilly song for this collaboration so I went back to an old song book and found this unused song.

10. Raining all my life – This song was called “waiting all my life” but it didnt really make sense so I changed it to “raining” because it was more commercial:-) The lyrics on this one are my favorite.

11. Just rock – Just a cool riff I was working on while recording. This song was very last minute. A knock on people who do xmas songs and seeing your idols turn into fools.

12. Everything must die – So easy to write when they are real:-)

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