Southern Culture on the Skids

Live at El Sol

It’s a tribute to this irrepressible band of reprobates’ timeless style that this live set, recorded at a night club in Madrid, Spain, in 1997, sounds like it could have been recorded yesterday in Raleigh, N.C., or last October at the Sierra Nevada Big Room. SCOTS has been brewing up and distilling its unique brand of high-octane, trailer trash rock for about 20 years now and has created a quintessential sound equaled only, perhaps, by the Cramps or the Ramones.

But SCOTS, despite being a bit outré, projects a much more positive vibe than its ostensible equals. Any band that can convincingly sing a verse like, “It don’t matter if your pants are shiny/ If your dick is big or your dick is tiny/ It don’t matter if your wig’s on straight/ If ya show up early or you party too late” (from “Soul City") is a band that knows how to generate a seriously egalitarian party vibe.

On this set it proves that its “double-wide” approach to party music—which involves a lot of driving, single-string blues-rock riffing and lyrics evoking the pleasures of everything from an “Eight Piece Box” to the “Camel Walk"—makes it a band worth having at least one album by—for livening up a backyard beer and barbecue or on those nights when the friends are over and they’re in the mood to crack open a bottle of Jim Beam and get real gone.

To obtain this gem you have to go to and visit the SCOTS online store, but while you’re there check out the whole site; it’s got a very active guest book where fans swap live recordings and a nice photos section of concert images sent in by fans. Definitely worth a look.