"Buena Vodka Social Club"

 By Dark Starr

Anyone who reads a lot of my reviews will know that music that combines seemingly unrelated styles earns a special place in my heart. This is just that kind of music. While I figure a lot of such sounds fit into the progressive rock section, I’d have to say this does not. It combines punk rock, other hard edged sounds along with other elements. The most obvious elements added to the mix are Russian and Mexican music. When the band claims to hail from both Mexico and Siberia, you know what you';re in for! Tunes like "Machine Gun Blues", "Rock N' Roll Show" and "Gasolina" bring the Russian/East European/polka influences into a hard rock framework, while "I Kill The Dog", "Frijoles y Lager" and "Mule" head south of the border to inject a traditional Mexican flavor.

They don’t stop there, but those are the most prevalent musical references. You can spot traces of other exotic world music styles, 80's hair metal, power pop and more as well. Somehow, they manage to keep it from being a mess and on the song "Corpse Bride", they pull out all the stops with an "all of the above" rocker. This is a fun disc that’s definitely out of the ordinary. It seems quite tongue in cheek, but it’s also quite fascinating and well constructed.