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CD REVIEW: The Amboys - "Everything Between The Moon & The Sun" (3 1/2 stars)

By Gary Wien


The Amboys have been one of my favorite New Jersey-based bands ever since they first started kicking around the Asbury Park area a year ago. Their debut record, "Everything Between The Moon & The Sun" provides brilliant country-infused garage rock and roll that reminds me of Johnny Cash waking up on the wrong side of the bed after an all night binge, taking some speed, and heading out to the local punk rock bar to jam with whoever was on stage. It's got a true kick ass spirit to it.

Songs have the energy of Jason & The Scorchers in the 80s and the bite of Social Distortion. The record features some of the best rock and roll keyboard I've heard in a while -- that great B3 sound found in classic ‘60s garage rock tunes. It's a sound that's timeless, very cool, and rarely used as well as it is here.

"With late nights and heavy drinking, the in-between hours of the moon coming up and the sun coming back around, many things can and do happen. Lost love, one night stands, overdue phone calls, shots of whiskey and too many cigarettes," is how the band describes the record. I'd agree.

My favorite tracks are "Can't Live Here", "Kid In the City", "This Very Thin Line" and "Drunk Mistake".

"She said she could live here, she could live there
She could live just about anywhere
Said there's one thing I just can't do
I can't live here with you."

--"Can't Live Here"


Gary Wien has been covering the arts since 2001 and has had work published with Jersey Arts, Elmore Magazine, Princeton Magazine, Backstreets and other publications. He is a three-time winner of the Asbury Music Award for Top Music Journalist and the author of Beyond the Palace (the first book on the history of rock and roll in Asbury Park) and Are You Listening? The Top 100 Albums of 2001-2010 by New Jersey Artists. In addition, he runs New Jersey Stage and the online radio station The Penguin Rocks. He can be contacted at gary@newjerseystage.com.


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