The Sloths – One Way Out

The Sloths – One Way Out: What sort of band puts out its debut album 50 years after its formation? You’d expect such a band to have been memorable enough to sustain the fascination of its audience during long decades spent dormant. You’d further expect that band to be made up of rock and roll true believers — wild men whose enthusiasm for rough riffs and sharp storytelling hasn’t been diminished a bit by the passage of time. You’d expect them to be local legends. In other words, you’d be looking for a band like the Sloths. For years, this explosively entertaining combo was a closely-guarded Southern California secret. Now, they belong to the world.

“One Way Out,” the Sloths’ smart, kinetic new single, is exactly the sort of rambunctious rock and roll that made the band a hot ticket on the Sunset Strip in the mid-1960s. There, the Sloths shared bills with the Doors, The Animals, Pink Floyd, and other soon-to-be-world-famous bands. “Makin’ Love,” a sizzling slice of proto-punk, was the Sloths’ calling card, but its salacious come-ons made it too hot for mid-’60s radio. But record collectors and garage rock aficionados kept it alive for years through word of mouth and inclusion on compilations. When the band got back together in 2011, they discovered a built-in audience hungry for new Sloths music — and younger punk rock listeners who could recognize a group whose time had finally come.