Rocco and the Rays

Rocco and the Rays – Palmdale Sun

RR 69 [1987]
I Get Excited – The Cat Blues / Wild Train – The Rider

Rocco and the Rays

In December 1984, Rocco (ex-Rocco et ses Frères, named after Visconti’s film) joined forces with Johnny Delco and Bruno (ex-Stalin Girl) to form the Jivaros. Playing wild Rockabilly, the group kept that line-up for a while. Finally, in September 1985, the trio was joined by Claudio, the Rocco et ses Frères drummer, and the group became Rocco and the Rays.
In 1986, the group recorded their first album, a four-track under the leadership of Marc Police (Wampas, Pasadenas) and Alain Wampas (Wampas, Los Carayos, Happy Drivers).
The result, although frustrating by its shortness, is no less dazzling. The four songs skillfully mix influences and, in just four tracks, build the band’s legend. The group introduces Morriconian influences into its Rockabilly, bordering on classicism, to better distance itself from it the next minute. From I Get Excited, a snappin’ Rockabilly all in contained savagery, to the hillbilly of the title track, there is absolutely nothing to throw away on this mini-album. The production perfectly highlights Rocco’s superb voice, who knows how to be captivating and, the next moment, switch to the wild or a torrid style akin to Gene Vincent.

Fred “Virgil” Turgis

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