By: Rick Polo (Editor-in-Chief)
Artist: White Cadillac
Album: Classy Ride for Sleazy People
Release Date: 5/12/12
Imagine, if you will, that you’re speeding down the highway; top down and cranking the stereo at a blistering decibel. With your woman by your side and a case of brews in the back, you don’t exactly know where you’re going but you know you’re on the ride of your life. And you don’t want it to stop!
That’s about the most concise summation of the material heard on Classy Ride for Sleazy People, the sophomore album from Youngstown’s raunchy rockers, White Cadillac. With tongue-in-cheek themes, adrenaline pumping grooves and blistering riffs, this new disc picks up right where the group’s last effort, 2010’s Casualty of the City, left off.
“I feel that if this album doesn’t get us some traction, I don’t know what will,” said lead singer and guitarist Adam May. “This is the album where I’m scared it’s going to be tough to top. I think we topped the first one, but this new one is pretty balls out.”
“Of all the things I’ve been a part of, this album is probably what I’m most proud of,” added drummer Fred Whitacre.
Formed in the December of 2009, White Cadillac is a SteelValley supergroup of sorts, with all three of its members hailing from successful projects. Whitacre has been slamming the kit for stompcore legends Kitchen Knife Conspiracy since the late 90s. Bassist B.J. Lisko is the frontman and lead guitarist of The Turbo Lovers and May has been the mastermind behind Groove Conductor, among other projects.
Despite such diverse musical backgrounds, the members align like planets in White Cadillac.
“We were all from different projects,” said May, “and the first time we jammed together in B.J.’s basement it was like, ‘what are we going to jam on?’ So he and I busted out some stuff we already knew [from a previous project] and then some songs evolved. But this time around it was definitely really more of a collaborative effort and the songs have a different feel. I don’t think it was intentional, we’re just evolving naturally.”
“I think we were going to make songs that were straight-forward, concise, heavy and catchy,” added Whitacre. “That’s what we wanted to do.”
“People expected it to sound like our other projects melted into one,” continued May. “It doesn’t sound like any of those bands I don’t think. That wasn’t necessarily intentional. I’ll write this funky blues Prince kind of riff, then Fred slams in with some KKC-esque drums and B.J. just blows it up on bass.”
Both May and Whitacre say that the term “classy ride for sleazy people” came from a review of the band from a British magazine and well, I must say that it’s pretty spot on! The ride, being the musicality, is extremely energetic yet soulful and authentic. It’s quite sophisticated. But the rock, the raw, raunchy straight-forward rock and roll that is produced from the entity of White Cadillac, is a sleazy, stripper-filled high-octane party, not intended for the faint of heart.
Classy Ride for Sleazy People contains no ballads, and rarely slows for those dangerous curves. Each song is a punch in the face and a kick in the pants. Cuts like the album’s opener “Insomnomaniac” and “Loverman” exemplify what fans have come to know and love of the band; a shameless riff-driven rock song. Other tracks like “Today Is The Day” give a glimpse into the band’s angst-y side and “Girl Likes Girls” turns the raunch up to new levels of greatness, while “Hell Hound” provides a throwback to the mystique surrounding rock and blues music at the Mississippi delta.
“It was fun to sit in the studio and hear all these songs,” said Whitacre. “It’s great how they came to life.”