March 15, 1979. Page 8.
Club 88 - West L.A.
Material: Original Power Pop
Performance: Four Star
(Freddy Moore: vocals; Bobbyzio Moore, sax; Dennis Peters, bass; Pete McRae, guitar; Al Galles, drums)
THE KATS' show at Club 88 was everything I hadn't expected. It was an enjoyable hour of some of the best, and I mean best, of the myriad of groups now playing power pop music in Los Angeles. Theirs was a lively, always active show.
THE KATS' music generated a 50s feel, but the music wasn't really oldies style, rather almost like a Leiber-Stoller production a la the Coasters, set to the 70s lifestyle. Their entrance followed by girls screaming and running to the front. A bit pretentious, I thought, because it wasn't needed. It detracted from the energy happening on stage and looked contrived,
Speaking of energy, take Rick Nielson of Cheap Trick, give him Robin Zander's voice and you've got Freddy Moore , lead vocalist and star of THE KATS. He and his brother Bobbyzio, who was an absolute terror on the sax, were the visual stars of the show. Mind you, everybody had his say and presence. Bassist Dennis Peters' towering height over the band, Pete McRae's ever-present hat and fine guitar work and Al Galles looking like a longshoreman who just got through unloading a ship and is out moonlighting at a bar with his best friends, added up to a feast for the eyes of the audience.
All this would be wasted if the music wasn't up to par, but no problem there, either. Everybody played a tight, streamlined set. At one point THE KATS snuck subtly into a jazz fusion riff for about a minute that really surprised the hell out of me; they took a complete 180 degree turn in direction. They pulled it off so effortlessly that it got a nice round of applause from the audience.
Throughout the evening everybody was everywhere, smiling and cavorting and truly enjoying themselves. Freddy Moore's songs were about the comical side of life in general. I Was A Teenage Shoplifter, Lost My TV Guide and their title-song, The Kats, show that this is a group to be reckoned with in the future. But hey, you don't need the girls to fake the energy or an audience response -- it was already there.
Editor's note: The Kats disavow any knowledge of, or participation in "the screaming girls", The girls' actions were completely independent from the band or anyone connected with the band. Varying numbers of fantical Kat fans would show up at various gigs wearing kitty ears, throwing Meow-Mix and TV Guides at the band. The Kats wish to thank their fans for their enthusiasm, and believe it or not, it was all the fans own idea to make such a scene.