Local CD Reviews

Jackson Rohm and the Hot Rails

Jackson Rohm


Acoustic Sessions


"I'm such a baby when I don't get my way," croons Jackson Rohm in "One More Fourth of July" on his sixth full-length CD. The guy has a soft side that he's not afraid to show, but that's no reason to hate him. Rohm does the singer-songwriter thing really well. Playing in an acoustic format for the first time, he doesn't suffer from a stripped-down approach. Rohm sounds sharp in gentle ballads like "Not Him Anymore" and "Bleeding." While there's a plethora of love songs, Rohm expands his lyrical palette with "These Four Walls," a terrific anthem about throwing caution to the wind. — Jeff Niesel

Jackson Rohm performs at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 25, at West Park Station (17015 Lorain Rd, 216.476.2000, westparkstation.com). Free.

The Hot Rails

Single Entendre



Led by singer Ken Janssen, who firmly believes louder is better, the Hot Rails kick some serious ass on this unrelenting CD that marries classic-rock riffs with indie-rock attitude. "Trigger Finger" starts with what sounds like swarming locusts before the guitars kick in and Janssen screams, "I need a $2 drink and some $10 head." It's nasty stuff. "I Am Supernatural (But I Don't Believe in the Supernatural)," "Other Man" and "Dealbreaker" are irreverent dirges that sound like they crawled out of Seattle's grunge scene. "Dickson, T.N." is a gritty Southern rock ballad, "Snakes n' Sparklers" is a great party tune, and "Death From Above" packs a mean metal punch. — Niesel

The Hot Rails perform with Banderas, All Dinosaurs and Party Sweat at 9 p.m. Saturday, March 27, at the Beachland Tavern (15711 Waterloo Rd., 216.383.1124, beachlandballroom.com). Tickets: $5 advance, $7 day of show.