Sex and Dying in High Society
Label: FAT POSSUM
Los Angeles' X helped transform the underground punk rock movement with this influential 1980 debut. John Doe and Exene Cervenka trade off spunky, snotty snarls through bouncy, frenetic punk rhythms ("Your Phone's Off the Hook, But You're Not," "Los Angeles"), rockabilly guitarist Billy Zoom's warped rock riffs ("Johny Hit and Run Paulene," "The World's a Mess; It's in My Kiss") and even a Doors cover ("Soul Kitchen"). Speaking of The Doors, Ray Manzarek's production and gnarly organ work on tracks like "Nausea" and "The Unheard Music" adds an edgy psych-tinged dynamism to the heady mix.