Arguably the best album from these underappreciated Minneapolis rockers, Off the Hook is the prototypical Magnolias experience. Guitarist and singer John Freeman spins down-and-out and broken-hearted tales of the rock & roll street life, while second guitarist Kent Militzer lays down his trademark shimmering melodic leads. Off the Hook also contains the band's signature song, "When I'm Not," a spirited, instantly catchy singalong. The group certainly mixes in some hard partying with the pop, however, with songs like "Tear Up This Town" and "Take Me Away" proving the band can rock with the best of them — loudly. A disorderly cover of the Suicide Commandos' (another great but sadly overlooked Twin Cities rock band) "Complicated Fun" makes this album a regional classic, and a must-have for fans of underground rock. -AMG
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