Cruzados- After Dark
Back in the days before I had a job in high school, my Mom used to give me $2 a day for lunch money. Being that I was already becoming a music freak, I would save up the money and mooch food off girls during lunch period. Yeah, I was pretty smooth with the ladies! Anyways, I'd take the now $10 I had on Friday and walk over to Richardson Square Mall and head straight into Camelot Music to buy...well, anything.
I always made it a point to check out their cutout bins to see what they had for cheap. And that's how I discovered the Cruzados and this album in particular. I had no idea who they were or what they sounded like, but I thought they had a cool band name and a cool album cover. That was enough for me. Plus, it was only $4 on cassette. $6 profit!
I get home and put it on immediately, crossing my fingers that they weren't duds. By the time the first chorus for opening track, "Small Town Love" finished, I was hooked. I honestly remember having chills by how great this album was and how proud of myself I was to "discover" them. I couldn't tell you how many times I played the cassette that weekend, but I knew every word to every song rather quickly without the aide of the lyric sheet. And I'm still singing along with Tito right now.
In 1989, if anyone asked me who my favorite bands were, Cruzados would make the cut everytime. But just like any 16 year old, I eventually stopped listening and moved on to other bands. It didn't help that there weren't going to be anymore Cruzados albums either. But last year when I found this collecting dust in End of An Ear with a $1 price tag on it, I was that excited school boy all over again. Once again, I went home and immediately played it over and over. Even tonight, "Small Town Love", "Road of Truth" and the rest of the songs sound as great now as they did 21 years ago. (Just in case you were wondering, I know the album came out in 1987, but I didn't buy it until 1989.)
This is what real rock n' roll sounds like to me. For their sake, I wish more people agreed, but selfishly, I like to still consider them my little secret.
Too bad I can't find a real video for them off this album. Instead, here's a cool interview they did with MuchMusic in 1987. I enjoyed it so maybe you will too.