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Calling All Cars On the Vegas Strip

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Album Review

Athens, GA duo Jucifer's debut album, Calling All Cars on the Vegas Strip, draws on the grungy noise of early alternative metal — think of bands like the Jesus Lizard, Helmet, or the Melvins — and the loud, trashy, sometimes industrial-tinged scuzz-rock that preceded it (Big Black, Pussy Galore, early Royal Trux), plus an ample helping of goth-rock melodrama. It's a sound not many bands were exploring as the end of the '90s approached, which is why it will seem refreshing to listeners who don't like the directions alternative metal has taken in achieving mass popularity. Calling All Cars isn't just aimless noise banged out for obnoxiousness' sake; there are discernable riffs and hooks throughout, although they're more angular than catchy, requiring several listens to sink in. Unlike some of their influences, Jucifer doesn't spend the entire album in attack mode; there are some slower, more textured tracks that allow lead vocalist Amber Valentine to display her less aggressive side as well. There are some slow spots where the album gets too dirgey, but overall, it's an intriguing and promising debut.


Formed: 1993 in Athens, GA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Rising out of a new wave of independent music from Athens, Georgia, sludge metal duo Jucifer produced a sound that resembled R.E.M. about as much as the New York Dolls resembled Barry Manilow. Alternating between atmospherics and frantic punk metal, the boyfriend-girlfriend team of Ed Livengood and Amber Valentine began impressing locals with their performing skills in 1993. Their first album, Calling All Cars on the Vegas Strip, began getting airplay at the end of 1998 and was released that same...
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Calling All Cars On the Vegas Strip, Jucifer
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