The Koffin Kats – Born of the Motor

26 Mar

The Koffin Kats
Born of the Motor
October 22, 2013
Sailor’s Grave Records

Vic Victor – Lead Vocals & Upright Bass
Johnny Kay – Guitar, Vocals
Eric “E Ball” Walls – Drums

1. All Of Me Is Gone 03:11
2. Under A Blue Sky 02:39
3. Giving Blood 03:38
4. Born Of The Motor 02:08
5. Devil Tales 02:26
6. The Collector 03:39
7. This Heart (Stays On Ice) 02:24
8. Twist Apart 03:01
9. The Team 02:50
10. Goodbye Blues 02:42
11. It’s Real 03:35
12. Gone To See The World 03:04

I don’t know a bunch about the whole psychobilly/rockabilly scene. So, when I got this I wasn’t sure what I’d write, but if you like bands like Volbeat, Social Distortion, Tiger Army and that style it won’t be too hard to listen to this. Pretty solid for a three-piece band.

Detroit’s outlaw rock ‘n’ roll misfits, The Koffin Kats, released their seventh studio album, Born of the Motor, this past fall (October 22nd), through Sailor’s Grave Records.

With Born of the Motor, The Koffin Kats continue their classic storytelling style, but with their most real, most personal lyrics to date. “Life is hard… life is uncertain – that’s something everyone understands. It’s not where you start or where you end up, it’s how you LIVE your life in between that matters,” says vocalist Victor.

Both a sonic homage to their resident city and its blue-collar legacy, and a metaphor for being hard-wired towards hard work and persistent ambition, The Koffin Kats charge forward waving a proud flag soiled with blood, sweat and whiskey-defying the decay and chaos that has stained their city in recent years.

Rating: ** * two out of three stars.

On to the story . . .

Living in close proximately is rough. Whether you’re in an apartment or condo or a townhouse, you’re stacked right up on somebody else and there is a real good chance that they’re assholes.

How do I know this? Simple, I have lived in many apartments and studied the native people that lived there. In my forty plus years on this earth I have had one set of neighbors that were great. A Hispanic family that were all hard working people and the best part – extremely quiet. They could be having a raging birthday party and you wouldn’t hear a peep. This equals great neighbors.

Over the years my wife would usually be the friendly, outgoing neighbor and I’d just nod and keep my distance. Why? I have found that if both people were friendly, most, apartment dwelling neighbors interpret this as “Oh, they’re cool. We can bump our raggedy ass music until three in the morning, they won’t mind.”

So, I also gave the impression that I was unapproachable. It worked most of the time. Then I got a bit older and something happened, I got a pinch nicer. Either that or marriage beat me down to a bloody nub. Whatever the reason it has become harder to exude that “I’m mad and crazy,” thing twenty-four hours a day, it’s hard.

No with my dad it was the opposite . . . in a way. He mastered the ability to turn it on and off. A great example when his last long-term relationship ended, he packed up and moved a few blocks from the end of the earth to Lake Elizabeth.

A week after my dad moved in and he had done some painting and put in carpeting he bumped into his next-door neighbor. He smiled and nodded. The neighbor started with “The place was a wreck can’t wait to see what you’ve done.” Then she started to walk to his front door. My dad stopped her and said, “Whoa, we’re not that kind of neighbors. I see you, I’ll wave, maybe say “Crazy weather we’re having,” but that’s it. You stay in your house, I’ll stay in mine.” And that was it.

Now me on the other hand I’ve been a bit nicer to the neighbors at our townhouse complex and honestly, I regret it. For example, every time I pass my Persian neighbor he stops me to talk and it’s always like this:

“My friend, you hear man at five o’clock morning?”

“Did I hear man?”

“Yes, smoke cigarette?”

“No, I didn’t hear any cigarettes.”

“I pay hundred tow-sand dollar for house.”

“OK, sounds like a lot.”

“And man smoke five o’clock morning.”

“Um, ask him to leave?”

Yes my friend, I punch face.”

See if I just scowled when I moved in I wouldn’t be stuck for twenty minutes with this shit.

But I keep on trying to be a pleasant neighbor.

A young, twenty-something Hispanic guy moved into the complex a month or so back. Nice quiet hipster kind of guy. Rain or shine he wears his ear-buds, beanie and neck-tie that stops mid-chest.

I see him everyday, I nod, and he smiles and looks down. So, after a week or so I started to wonder if he could talk or if there was something mentally wrong with him.

Then I got an answer. One day my son and I took a walk to the corner and on the way back my hipster neighbor was sitting out in front of the complex smoking. Pretty much all he does morning, noon and night. Sit outside and smoke.

Now, my son, when we walk, is in an action movie. I walk; he’ll run up ahead of me, throw some punches and then hold his fist up in victory. I don’t know what he’s playing, but he’s exercising, so I don’t sweat it.

This day as we walk past Mr. Short-Tie, my son is running, possibly doing some Ninja moves, says, “Looks like you’re having fun.”

I’m shocked; I didn’t think the sucker could talk. Unfortunately it popped my son out of his anime action world.

I asked my son what the guy said, my son said, “He wants to know if I’m having fun.”

“Are you?”

“No, I’m battling.”

“Sounds good, carry on.”

Neighbors, who needs the weirdos?



Life Won’t Wait is out now, grab a copy today:

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2 Responses to “The Koffin Kats – Born of the Motor”

  1. 1
    Eddie Cook Says:

    Mike-not really a fan of the psychobilly stuff, but your story is funny as hell-Eddie

  2. 2
    Mike E. Says:


    Hey, thanks for reading, glad you liked the story.


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