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Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Quakes
Winter Drag (Orrexx)
Digital single

Under the judicious aegis of Paul Roman, legendary psychobillies the Quakes grow finer with every passing year --  more secure in their singularity and lightning capacity. Roman's clever writing, guitar serrations, and hard scrabble-triumphal vocals resound confidently, urged on by rough-and-rumble confederates Juan Carlos and Wes Hinshaw.  

Video: "Winter Drag"

Friday, October 20, 2017

Real McKenzies
Two Devils Will Talk (Fat Wreck Chords)

Perhaps the Real McKenzies are the only Celtic Punk band in the way that Only The Meteors Are Pure Psychobilly. No rivals hew as assiduously to the core, and none produce as consistently stalwart a musical body.

Accordian darts in and out of guitar onslaughts; traditional airs are hefted high; indomitable pounding lashes all to frantic animation; and hoarse, impassioned exclamations thunder at center. The old and the new bond as a vibrantly unique creature, seizing without polish or politeness.

Leader Paul McKenzie told one interviewer that fellow Scots the (sadly, defunct) original Sensational Alex Harvey Band is the group for which he'd most wish to open. 'Twould be a bill for the ages.

Recommended "Seafarers," "Due West," "Weyburn," "Northwest Passage," "Float," "Fuck the Real McKenzies"

Video "Seafarers"

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Los RIPpers
Astromante single song (Sureste Records)

Ominous, insistent Spanish language psycho rendered distinctive by blaring Morricone trumpet. Intriguing in its guttural sweep.


Jinx Jones Trio
(Vibrosound Records)

Each successive Jinx Jones disc has elevated his oeuvre. This latest persists in that upward arc, and also raises sails toward fresh ambition.

Jinx has led something of a double professional life, surreptitously stepping it up with jazz coadjutors in the hippest night spots, even while etching with twanged electrical ammunition his more globally familiar rockin' renown.

Of course, silky jazz accentings always informed Jinx's country-planted rockabilly, much as they wonderfully did in that proffered by the late Danny Gatton. Understatedly eloquent and of common national lineage to the hillbilly, western, and blues idioms also turning up, they were naturally appropos to the larger intent, though of understandably limited prominence.

Now, though, the lights are fully up. The man has ushered his hot-and-cold jazz persona from the shadows, giving it ungoverned utterance. Mature, measured, and stately, each passage is enriched by a sangfroid that at once entrances and bespeaks miles-deep bearing.

To dig is to nod and feel wise.

Recommended "Flying Home," "Swedish Pastry," "Missile Blues," "Stompin' At the Savoy," "So What"

Video Jinx Jones Trio live at California's Impulse Room

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Eric O'
Bricks (self)

An emotionally contemplative concept disc so comfortably tuneful that uncommitted listeners might miss the narrative substance. So, pay heed while you sway to prepossessive lilts evocative of the Mavericks, Dwight Yoakam, and wood grain-Americana hefted proudly.

Recommended "Bricks," "Lucky Lucky Man," "It's Just the Way You Are," "Broken Jukebox," "She's Got You Fooled," "Hey Little Mama"

Video CD sample

The Owlz
Introducing the Owlz (self)

Woodwinds, doghouse, 88s, and canny confreres hit the cobblestone boulevard, turning up a tangy and sleek collection in which Gypsy Jazz, jump blues, Latin winking, and the splash of freshly-ridden wild surf combine in kicky union.

Recommended "Bossa Dorado," "That's What She Said [featuring Alex MacDonald]," "Honeysuckle Rose [featuring Robyn Adele Anderson]," "I'm Beginning To See the Light," "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes," "Heads Up"

Video "Bossa Dorado"

Gary Angel and the Angel Country Band
One More Time (Outlet Music)

This gentle country rhapsodizing has been heard before, and it never wears out its welcome. Without undue emphasis, it makes its good points, glides easily on stringed wings, and assumes plain folk-rank when so much else about exerts vainly.

Recommended "Stop the World and Let Me Off," "One More Time," "Rockin' Alive," "Teardrops Over You," "They'll Turn It Around," "You're Gonna Be Good"