The Sniffs - Self Titled (2013) The Sniffs - Self Titled (2013)

The Sniffs - s/t (Disco-Lite Records, 2013)

Near the end of Main Street in "surprising" Suffolk, VA, there sits a statue of perhaps the most notable connection to the city: Mr. Peanut. The hospital located roughly a mile from me is named in part after Amedeo Obici -- the founder of Planters Peanuts. I've lived in this somewhat sleepy town for over ten years.

The only time I've smelled said legumes in the air was when I last opened a jar of them in 2006. Of course, I would like to have my olfactory system stimulated with the fragrance of roasted nuts during occasional "Walgreens Walks" in the morning, but another famous namesake has filled my nostrils with the unmistakable aroma of Kellogg's Sugar Smacks (Yes, I know they've long been rebranded as "Honey Smacks," but I prefer the original tag from an earlier era. DIG IT!!!) Here's the rub: The scent has been traced to the Sara Lee coffee and tea plant near Bunny's Restaurant! How did that stealthy frog sneak into the building? I don't usually endorse the crime of B & E, but an exception must be made in this instance. When SL's peak hours are coupled with a strong wind, the gorgeous mist is as inviting as an outdoor breakfast nook on a clear Sunday morning whilst sharing the tasty cereal with that special someone.

Ask Mike Tyson for a tale of the tape on The Sniffs from Washington, D.C., and he'll describe some blokes named Morris Seeth and John E. Marth who were part of British champ Lennox Lewis' entourage. Once "The Hangover" star's endless jabs of misinformation render you punch-drunk, have Gus administer the proper smelling salts and get a whiff of their demo from 2011. Compared to the slick presentation of a Showtime or HBO pay-per-view, the announcers' calls on "Zombie Society," "Prosecutor" and "Oh No" might reek like the primitivism of a corded car phone in Larry Holmes' Cadillac.

Mimicking the pugilistic poses from past titleholders such as Teengenerate and the Rip Offs on those grainy tapes, however, has The Sniffs smoldering like a serious contender on their latest fight package. Via the benefit of an improved sound system blasting throughout a still-rustic gym, straight-rights are extended with more brute force and blunt accuracy. From the opening bell, "OCD" and "(You Haven't Seen Me) Cruel" transform boring noses of unlucky sparring partners into colorful works of abstract art. Their comportment in the squared circle recalls a band of bruisers from Holmes' home state of Pennsylvania: The Prostitutes. Steering the caravan south towards our neck of the woods, Pernell "Sweet Pea" Whitaker is regarded as one of the sport's best-ever tacticians and ranks #48 on esteemed boxing historian Bert Sugar's greatest pound-for-pound fighters list. "Mystery" reveals a mastery of winning title belts in various divisions. The deceptively effortless style has kept Sweet Pea's fellow Virginian Eric Thornton dancin' 'round rings for over twenty years. This audio clip mirrors any number of his raised fists in the Electric Chairmen camp.

Whether by TKO or majority decision, count on many entries in the left column of The Sniffs' win/loss record for years to come. Success smells like Sugar Smacks. I learned that from a lawbreaker.

Gunther 8544

Give me 20 days to write something for Hardcore Norfolk, and I'll piss away 19 of 'em.  Which is why my career caps on the site hover around 30 instead of 300.  Nonetheless, I am occasionally inspired by talented folks who call the Tidewater area home.  Believe it or not, glowing marks have been awarded to individuals unbeknownst to me.  My mathematician side would like to construct an NCAA March Madness-like bracket representing the 64 greatest bands in our region's history.  Perhaps Debra, Paul and I will assemble in a conference room somewhere in Suffolk and bring the draw sheet to life.