The Rudies, with a name just generic enough to confuse long-time music listeners, offer an interesting blend of reggae, ska, punk and classic rock on their self-titled release from Blue Pie Records. You’ll have no trouble spotting influences from Bob Marley to the Clash, and while there may be better acts in the grand scheme of the mainstream, these veterans of the Lexington, Kentucky music scene create due to a sense of passionate obligation, a quality that is both obvious and endearing.
The Rudies opens with Attilla the Dub, a number that blends an odd mixture of the Misfits, Sabbath and Living Colour with flavors that are distinctly ska and reggae – a formula that exemplifies what is to follow. Boss Rude Grrl manages to create an intriguing ambience, while Gunshot addresses the gun culture of the streets, tossing in an interest spoof of Skynyrd’s Saturday Night Special. Other standout tracks include Psycho Babylon, an offering that would make the perfect soundtrack to the political-based horror flick that is our current government, should that movie find a big screen; and Wrap Yo Head, a subliminal tip of the hat to the Spencer Davis Group’s I’m a Man.
At times, The Rudies can get a little repetitive, with songs wearing well beyond their welcome, but if jam bands are your personal pleasure, the Rudies are a tight fit – and undeniable when they lock into that hefty reggae groove.