Thursday, December 19, 2013
There's a bit more grit here than you might expect, given the recordings' 1960s origins. The boys all sound as if they've had one or two pints and are ready to have a good time. It walks right on that edge of being too mannered and a wreck. I assume that for the time, these recordings would be analogous to what the Pogues were doing in the 80s.
Thursday, November 28, 2013
Chicken Skin Music flips the script a bit. Yeah, it still starts with some blues covers, but the next thing you know Cooder is throwing in Latin and Hawaiian influences and it gets good and weird.
I suppose that those influences are there if you look hard enough, but really they're another indie rock band that I fail to hear what makes them special.
This is sort of a lost classic, and deserves to be more widely heard.
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Saturday, November 16, 2013
Unfortunately this album still needs some work. While it is at times absolutely wonderful, there are many times when the words are clumsy and awkward. It's a shame, because with more work, this could have been as good as Leonard Cohen, & other A listers.
For me, in fact, that line straddling is problematic. They seem to be committed to neither tradition. Maybe it's just me, and I can't handle the cognitive dissonance. But I would rather that the music was either more traditional, or more experimental.
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Oh well. Holcombe seems to consistently record records of left of center country songs. I can't determine if his breaking of structural rules is intentional or not. And does it matter? Regardless, I find that his insistence on moving away from the norms distances me from his songs.
On closer listening, it's remarkable how much of its sound is actually production techniques covering up the actual music. Her voice is weak and thin, barely capable of holding a tune. The guitar playing is simple and repetitive. None of the parts are remarkable or worth much consideration.
And yet the whole is really quite remarkable.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Sunday, October 27, 2013
Thursday, October 24, 2013
Cherryholmes are one of the many bands to follow in the wake of Alison Krauss. Slick production and soft, whispy vocals are the first thing that you notice over the technical perfectionism. They developed quite a following before their breakup, but this sort of thing inevitably leaves me cold.