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from RootsTown Magazine in Belgium. How's your Flemish?


Better Off Dead- Girl With A Job

Better Off Dead have certainly done some impressive production work, considering that Girl With A Job was recorded in a bedroom in Jersey City. Incorporating, blues, rockabilly, swing and pretty much anything else that was once considered just good old rock 'n' roll, these Jersey boys put a new stomp on the Treiners' Rockin' is 'R' Business and Bo Diddley's Mama Keep Your Big Mouth Shut, as well as rolling out several chuckle worthy tunes by singer VD King, like Did Your Dog Bite The Landlord? and Come Down Off The Roof. The pomade pack should be down on their knees thanking God for this one. -Now Magazine Toronto

Better Off Dead- Girl With A Job
A good sense of humor is an essential element for a blues songwriter (no one was more subtly funny than Willie Dixon), so any band with V.D. King tunes is already a step ahead of the competition. Girl With a Job (GarageLand 0722) from New Jersey's Better Off Dead doesn't look or sound like the budget production it is (the liner notes say it was "recorded in a bedroom in Jersey City"). It's got thick, meaty production, a batch of great songs, and fiery playing from guitarists King and Don Kenny and harpist Tim Cassidy, backed by a tough rhythm section. This disc is a blues party all by itself. Best cuts: the title tune ("I'm looking for a girl/I'm looking for a job/I'm looking for a girl, a girl with a job"), the loser's lament "Sleepin' On the Sofa," and the groovy "Sock It to 'em JB" (that's Bond ... James Bond). Highly recommended. - Blues Revue Magazine


Click here to buy musicBetter Off Dead - Girl With A Job! - Garageland 0722
"Warning: contains genuine foot stompin', house rockin' r&b from the swamps of New Jersey!" Een betere omschrijving had ik er niet van kunnen geven want "that's what it's all about!" Vettige en zompige boogie in de beste Paladins-, Tailgators- en Blasters-traditie. Girl With A Job is Better Off Deads tweede cd en een ongelooflijke stap voorwaarts. Hun eerste, titelloze cd was zonder meer goed, maar af en toe ook wat rommelig. Hier gaan ze er plankgas van door voor "a wild ride through boogie country". 17 songs lang geven ze er een ferme lap op. Rockabilly, swing, blues, Bo Diddley beats en high octane r&b vormen een licht ontvlambare cocktail. Het zijn geen puristen, alle stijlen passeren de revue. Het is moeilijk er enkele songs uit te lichten, daar ik constant de hele cd laat spelen, maar wat ze met Rockin' Is 'R' Business van de Treniers aanvangen is magistraal. Grappige songteksten (de titels zijn een goede indicatie: Sleepin' On The Sofa Tonight, Did Your Dog Bite The Landlord?, Sixpack And You, Gin And Tonics Tonight, Buzz Off…) en een degelijke productie maken van deze cd een klein meesterwerk. Wanneer je nog eens lekker loos wil gaan is Better Off Dead helemaal je ding. Dringend naar België laten overkomen voor enkele stomende concerten zou ik zo zeggen. -Rootstown Magazine (Belgium) OK, your Flemish is rusty, so click here for a translation

Click here to buy musicBetter Off Dead-Girl With A Job

Better Off Dead is alive and rocking. Their CD reads: "Contains genuine foot stompin', house rockin' R&B from the swamps of New Jersey!" and that's pretty much what the quintet does. Lead singer VD King wrote 14 of the 17 songs, mostly very rockin' R&B, usually on the faster side. "You Can't Do That" is a strong shuffle, "Voodoo Doll" is a hoppin' tune with Rockabilly-like guitar riffs, "Hole In My Heart" a blues rocker that could have been a Fabulous Thunderbirds track. "Beat Me Baby" swings and "Gin And Tonics Tonight" is a slow lounge-style instro shuffle with some fine blues harp playing -- the latter a ley element of their lively sound. -Blue Suede News



Click here to buy music Better Off Dead- Girl With A Job

Here's a CD that is sure to put a wide and manic smile on your face: Girl With A Job from Jersey City, N.J. band Better Off Dead (GarageLand Records). If you like the Fabulous Thunderbirds for their raunchiness, and Little Charlie & The Nightcats for their humor, or if you like the zaniness of Bo Diddley's brand of R&B, then you'll find this CD to be right up your alley. Apart from three rather obscure covers (Rex Garvin's ode to James Brown, "Sock it to 'Em JB," The Treniers' "Rockin' is 'R' Business" and Bo Diddley's "Mama Keep your Big Mouth Shut"), every song is an original, with plenty of fat juicy guitars, rugged but right harmonica licks, big bouncy beats and feel-good choruses sung by everybody and their friends (including Shemekia Copeland's keyboard player, Doña Oxford). Singer/guitarist (and songwriter) VD King is not exactly a classically trained singer, but his throaty party hardy voice is just the right instrument for this here fiesta in your CD player. If you end up dancing on the kitchen table or jumping naked in your neighbor's pool while listening to this CD, don't be too disturbed by your own actions. These things happen when you're having so much fun. Now stop reading this review and head on over to You can thank me later." -Blues Bytes Magazine


Click here to buy musicBetter Off Dead - Girl With A Job

Their presskit describes the band's music as "...17 glistening, globs of greasy goodness, guaranteed to get your good foot going." I couldn't have said it better myself. After the first spin you'll hear touches of Robert Gordon, J. Geils, blues, swing, and just good time dance music. Once you go back for a few listens, you'll get blown over because Better Off Dead are taking the genres into new territory! "BBQ," "Buzz Off," "Beat Me Baby," and "Voodoo Doll" are full of sweat-soaked swing. Any track here will impress the primal force inside you. Check out a live show! -Jersey Beat Magazine


MORE PRESS (for the first CD)

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Better Off Dead gets my vote for best low-budget recording of 2000 (quite an accomplishment considering they made the record in 1997). A regular attraction at the annual Blues 2000 and Beyond Festival in Sullivan County, NY, VD King and Better off Dead represent only the good in terms like "garage band," "bar band," and "home grown." Authentic in their nods to the blues, Better off Dead are not exactly a blues band, and though they’re not quite a rock-a-billy outfit, they capture the rebel spirit of rock’s early days with abandon. It’s part Dave Edmunds, part George Thorogood, part Chuck Berry and a whole lotta fun - not in any particular order. Best served with your favorite beer. A cool recording from a cool band. -Rhythm and News


"Guaranteed to keep the party going all night long!" -Blues Access

"They rock the clubs…and get their audiences dancing." -N.Y. Times

"Good Rockin' Blues" -Blue Suede News

"Has a punchy edge that moves and grooves" -Blues Revue Magazine

"The order of the day is jumping, good-time dance music" -Living Blues Magazine

"The band tears through barrel-house stompers to swinging Chicago blues to thumping rock-a-billy....Just get your butt home and throw this disc in your CD player" -Jersey Journal

"A mixture of rock, rockabilly, blues and swing, I'm reminded of Lynyrd Skynrd, the Cramps, B.B. King and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy all at the same time, baby."
-Compact Disc World's Liner Notes Magazine

"It's a new take on the blues; a more rockin'-billy, call it rawkus roll.... Check out Better Off Dead and I promise you won't be sorry" -East Coast Rocker

"Better Off Dead didn't fail to impress as they deconstructed the blues to its most primal form...Swaying and shaking with every note, the band sweat the blues demons from their souls adding a downhome countrified rockabilly sensibility to create a musical format all their own."
-Aquarian Magazine


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