Hailing from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Lincoln Street Exit encountered a wealth of local popularity during the freak years. Five singles were recorded between 1966 and 1969, followed by an album, Drive It, on the Mainstream label that contained a bloody-knuckled brew of heavy rock and dirty blues workouts.
Shortly after the arrival of the album, Lincoln Street Exit changed their appellation to XIT and continued to draw the regional crowds. Eternally remembered and revered by those who were there, it nonetheless remains a drag that neither group was heard much beyond their neighborhood because they certainly had their mojo firing on all cylinders.
Although everything and anything bearing either band’s name gets my stamp of approval, this is easily my favorite disc of the bunch, which marked Lincoln Street Exit’s second single.
Cluttered with choppy guitar riffs, racing rhythms and seriously incensed vocals, “The Bummer” (ECCO Records) is a cruel kiss off to a flame. Abuzz with high energy performances and acres of aggravated aggression, punctuated with a wild scream, the raw-boned rocker summons the specter of the early Kinks with style and substance. Exploding with emotion, the singer articulates the message well, stating he would rather sleep on benches than live with his girlfriend. One can only imagine how dramatic the relationship was!
Navigated by a dark and brooding pitch, matched by some creepy lyrics indicating Santa Claus is dead, “Sunny Sunday Dream” swoops its way through a series of whipping beats that hit the listener right in the gut. Groaning keyboard doodles, partnered with an eerie sound resembling a howling wolf, further make the track a certified psychedelic classic.