Three albums into his solo career, former Heart Attack hardcore kid and D Generation glam-punker Jesse Malin
has stepped out of the shadow of musical benefactor Ryan Adams and into recording duets with the likes of Bruce Springsteen. Mixing classic-rock swagger with sewer-chic snarl, his guitar work and choruses burst forth as wide as his capacity for optimism. Lyrically, his narratives revolve around seedy downtown-types with little means but big dreams — or, as he summarized with the title of his March release, Glitter in the Gutter
. And completing the package, what other singer/songwriter possesses cojones oversized enough to reimagine the Replacements' "Bastards of Young" as a piano ballad?