The San Luis Obispo, CA trio's full length 2016 debut, "Jewel Case," has been applauded by underground tastemakers at Razorcake and Pork magazines for its "new oldies sound" reminiscent of the Go Gos, drive-in movies, and teenage hijinx. According to Melted Magazine, the trio's syrupy garage-tinged punk rock is "like glue stuck to the bottom of your combat boot," and front woman/guitarist Hayley Crusher has been likened to Gidget with a guitar. With Rock n Roll High School blaring on the boom box and warm soda pop pumping through their veins, Hayley and the Crushers is pure poolside glitter trash from a realm that can only be called The Crusherverse.
Early Go-Go’s recordings are the most frequent touchstones cited in reviews of Hayley & The Crushers, a comparison that tends to overlook the fact that the latter band is two-thirds male and clearly favors glittery surf-punk over sparkly vocal harmonies. But Hayley and company have, in fact, recorded a spot-on version of “This Town,” while original tracks like “Hotshot” could pass for forgotten Go-Go’s B-sides. On their 2016 debut album Jewel Case, the San Luis Obispo trio dabbles in the kind of 1960s girl-group sass and wall-of-sound arrangements that suggest repeated conjugal visits with Phil Spector. Any risk of saccharine sweetness, meanwhile, is mitigated by Hayley Crusher’s psychobilly guitar riffs and Reid Cain’s chronically distorted bass, which sounds like it’s being playing through a Fender Bassman whose speakers were blown at least four decades ago.
--Bill Forman, Colorado Independent