As the needle drops into and finds the grooves of the wax, a fuzzy guitar lead opens Deathfix's first track, "Better Than Bad," and takes off, followed by the beat as the first rift completes. Immediately, you are digging through your record collection, somewhere between the "B" or "C" section, hunting down a copy of either Big Star's (the original) or Cheap Trick's (a cover; theme song for That 70's Show) version of "In the Street." (Damn it! I don't have either one; that would have been an excellent song to follow Deathfix in a DJ set.)
Their self-titled album continues on a stupendous rock 'n' roll journey, sticking to their guns of excellence, but not particularly with one pattern. Deathfix's free will keeps it alive for the duration of a very respectful seven song album. Yes, kids of the digital age, a proper album, such as this, should only be seven to eight solid tracks that actually say something; cut the crap and save the others for b-sides to your 7inches.
Handsomely designed, the jacket boasts with a silky gloss finish that is either telling me to caress this shit out of it (perhaps due to the erotic heart for an "a" and "x" used to dot the "i" in the hot Deathfix logo - yes, this is a Dischord Records release, people - on the front cover), or it is begging me to lick-lick-lick it, from top to bottom, side to side, edge to edge (all the heck over), 'cause it's like freaking candy. Candy, I tell you; candy. (Pause; I'm hungry now, and I think I need to take a cold shower.)
I'll tell you, glossy finishes can either make or break a cover (for me). When they are done right, as Deathfix and Dischord did with this release, damn... it can bring a man to tears. But don't get all glossy-happy on us now, record label people; make sure you've got a good photograph and/or design that calls for it. Christopher Green really did a bang-up job with such a simple photograph of what looks to be either the band's practice space, recording studio, or the scene from a DIY show (taken by lead singer and guitarist, Brendan Canty, I am guessing), and utilizing the dreamy Deathfix logo, designed by Linas Garsys. I love how the photograph/design fades to black as it wraps around the spine onto the back panel, giving just a subtle hint of your proximity to the Red Light District.
The sleek black theme is extended inside to the inner sleeve. Silhouettes of Deathfix on one side, and well placed credits and lyrics on the other; this is the kind of (anthem) music you would want to sing along to, so study up, boys. The only thing I can't quite figure out is why did the vinyl record come in its own white paper sleeve, while the liner notes are printed on a proper cardboard inner sleeve; meaning you could put the record inside the sleeve that the liner notes were printed on, and save yourself from including the white paper sleeve. The only thing I can guess would be perhaps they wanted to give the buyer the option; maybe some vinyl purists feel the cardboard inner sleeve could be damaging to the record itself, and they prefer to use the white paper sleeves. Possibly there was an added cost from the manufacturer due to liner notes arriving after the vinyl was pressed and put into paper sleeves. I don't know, but I swear this is becoming a (welcomed?) trend.
With a traditional silver faced center label on black vinyl, something I would have thought was a standard for all Dischord releases (but it's not; I just got up and checked a bunch of other Dischord records I have), Deathfix's self-titled release is a great, inviting rock 'n' roll momemto for all ages.