"Live to Win" (Acetate Records; 2007)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

The Turbo A.C.'s and their "Live to Win" is a weird bird. It's like a patchwork of eccentric rock styles yet it still gets its hooks to you and keeps you listening from beginning to end.

How to describe the sound found on this CD...? It's often suggested that, when you don't know how exactly to say something, to just go ahead and spit it out so I'm going to do exactly that: "Live to Win" is a Frankenstein conglomeration of Ramones-style punk, Dick Dale-style surf guitar and spaghetti western soundtracks produced in unpredictably alternating waves of slick production and garage rock. And I'm not talking from track to track; no, I'm talking about every track. 

Sound a little confusing? It is. It's not until almost two-thirds through "Live to Win" that you get caught up in the band's unique vibe (unless, perhaps, you're a fan of the band's previous CDs). But once you get a feeling for what the band's all about, "Live to Win" is pretty enjoyable ... if a little strange.

Definitely unique, defiantly strange and decidedly bold, "Live to Win" is one of those projects in which a band sticks to their guns and still manages to guide the listener along for the ride. It's not for everyone -- and I'm not even sure how often I'll pull out the CD to give it a listen -- but those looking for something different could do worse than the Turbo A.C.'s and "Live to Win."

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2008 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 28 Aug 2022 14:16:30 -0400.