The Cowgirls draw from a vast reflecting pool of influences - just as the Stooges, the Dolls, and the Ramones did. But their peculiarly Midwest, blues-tinged, garage rock sound didn't exactly sit well with your average first-generation, black-flag-waving Orange County hardcore fan; the Cowgirls emitted a fuel-injected fusion reminiscent of Chuck Berry and the MC5. Perhaps early hardcore fans just weren't ready for punks who could actually play their instruments just as well as they could smash them.

For Texans, the gravelly voice of Pat Todd might summon fond, faded memories of the legendary Gary Floyd - not from his Dicks days, mind you, but from his kinder, gentler, and surprisingly soulful incarnation as singer for the tragically short-lived Sister Double Happiness. Floyd's personal evolution (or digression) - from an anthemic angry punk poster child to something resembling a vocalist - garnered mixed reviews. Similarly, the Cowgirls have also evolved, retaining an early '80s approach and sensibility while dropping the era's typical tone of youthful urgency. As with any serious creative endeavor, longevity eventually becomes a decisive factor. Some people just can't stay angry for the rest of their lives and continue to function every day.

Much like San Antonio's Sons of Hercules, the Lazy Cowgirls have remained an underground phenomenon over the last 20 years, gracing the stage of just about every poorly lit, punk rock watering hole in this rambling country. As performers, however, the Cowgirls don't seem at all disheartened by the fact that many of the bands that

Friday, March 7
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were once considered their contemporaries are now largely regarded as legends. They still manage to muster enough velocity to keep audiences coming back year after year.

Old timers usually don't need much of a push to get out and see a band like the Cowgirls. For the youngsters, however, forget the recycled, over-processed, so-called melodic punk currently polluting our airwaves. You can pack that anemic shite away with the rest of your overpriced pre-teen complaint rock. Hell, maybe your grandchildren can turn it for a buck on e-Bay someday. In the meantime, get a taste of the real deal every single chance you can get. And hurry, because these guys ain't getting any younger. •



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