30 June 2015

LOU SHiELDS - Cold Water Collection

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Chicago's Lou Shields plays classic, original, piedmont-esque country blues without artifice, or a 
whiff of potpourri. His picking is nimble, powerful, and confident, his singing the same.

There's a tautness to Mr. Shield's playing, an insistence that balances his midwest twang and drawl with a southeastern mountain blues walk that is at once familiar, yet layered, present-day old-timey with none of the affectations that can draw. It's weird olde american music played like it came out today. This
isn't skinny suspenders music, but a soundtrack to Mr. Shield's travels and artistic sensibilities (he gigs as art teacher, too.)

I did a short interview with Lou and he told me that part of his style comes from skateboarding, and that sounds correct. There's a weighting and unweighting to his picking style, a flow of energy that is easy, yet tough. Burly, but gentle. Bottom line: quality stuff.


RS (Rick Saunders) :: I've been listening to your new album for the last week. It's terrific. 

A friend sent it to me who thought I should check you out so as a result I don't have much info about you.

Are all your songs originals?
How long have you been playing guitar?
You seem to have an interesting collection of instruments. Can you tell me about them? 
Your playing style is very physical, your picking is powerful. I'm interested in how you developed your style, and who you see as influences.

LS:: Yes, all the songs are originals.  I very rarely play a cover song.  However, I definitely have my influences and draw deeply from the past.

I have been playing guitar for over 25 years.  
I got into playing home/hand made instruments about 6-7 years ago.  I stumbled on a few during my travels and then a good friend of mine got into building.  He does most of my stuff now and goes by Callahan Guitars.  His name is Mike Callahan.
He made me a 4-String "Shitar" out of reclaimed materials from my skateboard ramp.  Also a 
image stolen from wesleybushby.blogspot.com/
spider-cone wood body resonator, a 6-string Shitar, a semi-hollow body w/P-90s and is currently finishing up a Tri-Cone.

I usually get a crazy idea and message him in the middle of the night and we start brainstorming the design, locating materials usually 60% reclaimed wood and parts and then he gets to building.  It is a great process and I love to support my friend who is an aspiring luthier.
My style comes from skateboarding, working hard and releasing my energy and experiences while performing my songs.  I am very into Pre-War Country Blues, Delta Blues, Fingerstyle/Ragtime/Jug Band and all that good stuff.  Also 80s Punk and Hendrix..  Some of the early Folk musicians as well. 
My style comes from so many past musicians and also environmental sounds too..  

I also have a mangled right hand..  I am missing half my Index finger, 1/4 of my pinky finger and my middle and ring were also injured in a table saw accident..  So my picking is A-typical.

RS:: Tell me about your picking style, if you will. 

How do you think it differs from another guitarist not missing parts of their hand? Did you play guitar prior to the accident?

LS:: I seem to do everything kind of my own way or as an interpretation of things I hear.  I would rather not get somebody else's idea "right" anyway..  So I have a few picking styles that I use in my tunes for Slide, Fingerstyle guitar and Banjo.  But because I use my thumb, middle and ring finger it comes out differently than more traditional picking styles/techniques.
I did play prior to the accident but losing my Index and part of my Pinky finger helped me get serious about art and music because it was nearly taken away forever.  So for me it was a strong life lesson to learn about having respect for the moment, working hard and learning to be grateful for what you have in the now.

RS:: How long have you been traveling and playing music?  
Do you have a favorite place to play, or venue?

How do your songs come to you? Music or lyrics first? Does it take you a long time to write, or can you whip 'em out? Or does it just depend?

LS:: I have been playing guitar for 25+ years.  But performing this way for 6.  I have been writing this kind of music since about 1995.  

I love to be in a place with good vibe and character.  Maybe an old building with an ancient wood floor, wood beams or some kind of cool history/vibe.  I luckily have many favorites both in the U.S. and Europe.
The songs come to me almost like magic.  I can not try to write a song.  They just happen.  It is usually a riff on the guitar or banjo that I some how pull out of the air. My lyrics are about whatever might be bothering me at the time.  Or something that I have learned.

Sometimes I can finish a song very quickly and others take months. But they all seem to evolve over time and take on their own life as I perform them.

RS::  Screamin' All Over/Mountain Country is a hell of a song. Please tell me about it.
LS:: The two songs run together.  Screaming all over is about how "she done left" and Mountain Country is about how he heads to the hills to pacify his mind.  "Head back to the mountain country, place where I Should be"

RS:: You tour a lot. You're playing shows all over but do you play on the street at all? Any place in mind you'd love to go to that you havnt yet? 

What's happening in the coming year? New recordings? Travels?

LS:: I started out busking and doing open Mics.  I occasionally still do both but I am focusing on touring as much as possible these days.  
We are working on a tour in Europe for 2016 that will hopefully include Switzerland, Finland and Sweden along with Belgium, France Germany, Netherlands and Poland.  Fingers are crossed!  
I am excited about playing any new place.  I hope music and art will continue to take me down that road and I hope I can help folks feel better for a bit in the process.
I also will have an art show in Aarschot, Belgium in May 2016 at a Cultural Center for the city.  
I am just about to release a vinyl only LP called "Deep River".  I am planning to record again possibly this coming Fall for a Spring 2016 release.

When I return to the states I am doing a run with The Hangdog Hearts to the East Coast.  And then I will head West on my own to California.  I return to the Midwest August 9-12 for Farmageddon Music Festival in Wisconsin and then Muddy Roots Music Festival in Cookville TN Labor Day weekend 2015

RS:: Thanks for your time, Lou! Best of luck in the new year


18 June 2015

RiVER OF GENNARGENTU - Taloro

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River Of Gennargentu (the nom de blues of Sardinia's Lore Tuccio) is
proof once again that blues music is an international language, and in the right hands and the right voice it can be made new again while staying true to the original (whatever that is.)

The music of Jesse Mae Hemphill, R.L. Burnside, Junior Kimbrough, and of course the masters that came before them, live on in the music of the River Of Gennargentu, but there's differences.  Ghosts of African desert poly-tones brush past dancing Romas while electric Appalachians and the hill country people of north Mississippi meet the mountain and ocean people of Sardinia for a late night ramble. I keep saying it, and you know it's true: It's all connected.

It's subtle, intriguing stuff this River Of Gennargentu. I needed to know more. Fortunately, Mr. Tuccio was willing to chat with me. You'll find an interview below the music player::



RS (Rick Saunders) :: Tell me about your music, Lore. How long have you been playing? Sounds like you dig that North Mississippi hill country drone of Junior Kimbrough, but mixed with other sounds, too. Tell me who's influenced you, and how you discovered it.

LT (Lore Tuccio) :: I play since I was 14 (I am now 36 ) I started in mid 90's playing guitar in metal, punk and noise bands with friends, and experimenting kind of noisy electronic music with cassette tapes and turntables. I'm influenced by DIY punk ethic, but I listen a lot of music: genres is not so important, good music is important, in fact. 

Some years ago (about 2007) I bumped into primal blues, and has been an authentic revelation: primitive blues talks with your soul. My first influences were Son House, Bukka White, Rosa Lee Hill,  Skip James, Robert Pete Williams, Big Joe Williams, and the North Mississippi Hill Country scene, of course. So, I started playing the blues and building my own instruments: cigar box guitars, percussions, etc...

Then in 2011 I met this guy, we have friends in common, he listened some recordings of mine and proposed to play together: we formed Black Lodge Juke Joint, a raw punk/ blues duo, made two self-produced records and played in festivals, squats, pubs, houses parties, street's corners...

Now after years of moves around Italy and several changes in my life,  I'm returned to the small town where I'm grown, in central Sardinia, near Gennargentu Mountains, a place with beautiful natural landscapes, really into the wild some month ago I recorded the EP as you know, and that's all!

I forgot to tell you that in addition to the Delta and North Mississippi Hill Country (RL Burnside, Kimbrough, Jessie Mae Hemphill, Robert Belfour, etc.) is a  very important influence for me African blues (Ali Farka Toure, Tinariwen, Boubakar Traore, and more)! Also , people who come to my gigs says he feels even influence the Sardinian music , and that's good !

RS:: What/where is the River of Gennagentu? What's its significance to you?

LT:: About this, Taloro is a river that flows from the mountains of Gennargentu , so I chose the name is a tribute to my land and this people...You know , Sardinia is a sparsely populated region ( one of the least populated in Europe, 1.5 million inhabitants ), where the economic crisis feels a lot , going around playing I saw that people immediately understand the blues , is a music that fits in these times and places...

RS:: What's the music scene like for you? Do you play mostly around Sardinia or do you travel?

LT:: The blues scene in Sardinia is alive , there are a lot of individuals and bands that play : I can think of King Howl quartet, and Donnie, also Hola La Poyana , Sunsweet Blues Revenge , Francesco Piu, and many others , each with their own personal style... 

For now I played mainly in Sardinia , but I'm starting to run across Italy , the last time I played in Rome at Mojo Fest 2015 .. then this summer there is some good chance to play in Germany.

RS:: I was wondering if you were into the desert blues scene, considering your close proximity to Tunisia. That's interesting. I did a little research on Sardinia last night and listened to some guys playing the Launedas and that drone sound it makes reminded me of your sound.

LT:: Hey thanks for your considerations Rick! I would love to, I do not believe to be part of the desert blues, although there are cultural aspects that will probably bring us closer ( both Sardinian and Tuareg peoples are traditionally shepherds) Your mention of the launeddas made me think of one thing : here in Barbagia is a musical tradition that has much in common with fife & drum of North Mississippi, and here you play the drum (tumbarinu) and the fife (pipiolu) !

RS:: What sort of guitars do you use, and amps? Do you work strictly solo now?


LS:: I change often gear (among the various things I do to get some money there is the repair of musical instruments, before selling them happen to keep them for a while ), but now i'm using mostly my old Eko Navajo and FBT G.60 amp, and 6 string my cigar box guitar.

Taloro is recorded only with acoustic instruments: CBG, acoustic guitar, resonator guitar. During the recording sessions there was a microphone in front of me, so that together capture voice and instrument, one take, no overdubbing, in the simplest way possible. And yes, for now I play solo.

RS:: Anything else people should know about you or your music? Any new releases or big gigs coming up?


LT:: By the end of June  the Talk About Records decided to release the reissue of Taloro: that will contain two previously unreleased tracks dating back to the first recording sessions of the EP (2008 ): the hard disk of my computer where I recorded at the time it broke , and recently I found some tracks escaped to that mess, these will be included in the reissue. It will be in limited edition and hand-numbered . Then start summer tour , which will touch Sardinia, Italy and Germany...I hope I have answered all, if you have other questions just ask , thanks Rick !

RS:: Thanks for your time, Lore! 

14 April 2015

CHiCKEN SNAKE - Unholy Rollers

fb // LiSTEN! // reverbnation  // beast records // great interview // BUY: teelmusic at gmail dot com (this release is vinyl only!)

   Have y'all heard the new Chicken Snake album? It's called Unholy
Rollers. Chicken Snake rocks the best of the blues of The Cramps and the Gun Club, the book love of X and Nick Cave, the ghosts of Jesse Mae Hemphill, John Lee Hooker, Bo Diddley, and Junior Kimbrough, the cooked and crooked roots of Iggy and The Stooges, Johnny Dowd, Beefheart, Handsome Family, and of course the legendary Hasil Adkins! Chicken Snake combines it in their own original black and white (with technicolor swamp) New Orleans southern gothic style, that rocks as hard as it arts.

   Like a thing in the dark that's brusquely brushed past you, something chilling, thrilling, like the back of your ears touched by some dusty and kudzu covered Charlie Feathers and early Dr. John albums, Chicken Snake play dirty rock and roll pot boilers, part hard wink of evil juju blues bonfire in the middle of nowhere, and part late-night party on the covered patio, fetching beer out the iced down back of a hot rodded Ranchero.

   Jerry Teel (guitar/vocals - Ex-Boss Hog, Honeymoon Killers, Knoxville Girls) and Pauline Teel
(vocals and terrific photographer ) are partners in life and rock, and they make a terrific team, visually and sonically complimenting each other, and with the backup of Josh Lee Hooker on guitar, and Jessica Melain on drums they make for a seriously tough and interesting unit.
 

 Jerry Teel's historia de la rock music guitar tone is confident, sexy and stabbing, and his production on this album sounds sweet and sticky, but crunchy like a PBJ with extra nuts, muscadine jelly, sweet onions, and fried hot peppers. Pauline sings like the gal next door, but she's got a mess of razors and an ass-pocket of whiskey ready to go. It's brass-knuckle creeptastic '68 Elvis from the crypt blues and roll without pretension. Raw, honest, blood, sweat and murder, bad luck and trouble. Chicken Snake takes the often shiny, pillowed, and potpourried History of American Roots Music and drags its precious ass face-first through underground Louisiana swamps, across the dirty south's alleys and backwoods, stands it upright on stage and shines a hot, sweaty light on it...then makes it dance.

You need this. Get it. Vinyl album only via: teelmusic at gmail dot com














































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































11 April 2015

Who The Hell Is C.C. Adcock?


Who The Hell is C.C. Adcock?
One self-titled album in 1994 and another in 2004 called Lafayette Marquis. Both albums are dirty mojo bags stuffed to over flow with south texass blues and backwoods sleazy swamp town one swangin' blue light house party boogie.

Lafayette Marquis
branches down to throw on some textureized filthy mid-period ZZTtopian remixish  night tripper-esque voodoo sexy steamy spook funk. Growing up in S.W. Louisiana, years spent as a touring guitarist behind Bo Diddley and Buckwheat Zydeco is bound to skew yr ears to something different and different is a good word to start with when speaking of the music of C.C. Adcock.

The thing that attracts me to Adcock's work is what I look for in the music that I love best and moves me most. That's mystery, freshness, and a twist. I want to hear what I haven't heard before and C.C. Adcock brings it. Adcock keeps one deluxe custom-made steel toe work boot firmly stepping to the future while the other dances and slides confidently in, out, and all around a dirty french alligator Louisian sexy swamp mud under a shiny white hot desert Texan sun draped in sweltering big black moonless Los Angeloan sharkskin traditions.

C.C.'s side band Lil' Band O' Gold with Steve Riley of Mamou Playboys played back up for Robert Plant on a Fats Domino Tribute. Read ThisBuy Lil' Band O' Gold from AMAZON




Check out this short film on Lil' Band O' Gold! it's called Promised Land.



23 December 2014

MUDLOW - The MiNNESOTA SNOW ep

webs // twit // fb // itunes // bandcamp // reverbnation // soundcloud // youtubes

Cover photo by the great Casey Weber
   Mudlow believes in the darkness, the nightshade of black and blues at twilight, and the tension of breath in the space between.

   They know the mystery of a song's mood brings about a sense of place. The song Minnesota Snow is such a song. You can feel the threat. The menace of blizzard winds. A blizzard of snow, or a tempest of violence? Or both. You're the witness.

"Let out some air from the tires, rock it back and forth, Needles on empty, heater's on full."

   That's a place nobody wants to be in, on-the-verge of lost desperation. All you can do is hope and pray you didn't really fuck it all up this time. It's an apt M.O. for most Mudlow songs. The world is gone shit side up y'all, but it ain't gonna always be that way baby, and it ain't ever gonna be without the boogie. It's nothing without that Mudlow style.

   Let's take it down to Stubb's Yard.

   This is where Mudlow drives us through their North Mississippi, their Texas, their Detroit demolition. This is high steppin', steel-toe sliding, finger tracing, hand clappin', face-slappin' downtown rock city boogie music. At 2:28 it's the shortest song of the three, but that's all it needs.

   The third joint of this set is Codename Toad.

   Something untoward is going on but hell, nothing's illegal until you get caught, right? It's a dirty rockin' thing having something to do with guns (a walnut grip Baretta by name) a mohair suit, a clear pint, plenty of cocaine, some weed and a shootout. It sounds like a breakneck, backroad trip from Peacehaven to Small Dole, down Devil's Dyke Road, to Shoreham and Saltdean. Listening to side one of ZZ Top's Tejas loud on repeat, taking that last midnight run...praying...Mr. State Trooper...

   It's a perfect example of a Mudlow song that could be the basis for a movie. Each song acts as a vignette of British crime, grime, and time. It's the Brighton breakdown of AC/DC'd dirty soul blues, hard loaded swagger, and a lot of whiskey, cigarettes and well-thumbed paperbacks.

   It's only been two years since Mudlow released their second album, Sawyer's Hope, but for some reason it seems longer to me. With each release, I get sucked into this Mudlow soundtrack for awhile, where the streets are usually wet and shining with street-lamp glare, everybody has a hard noir story, and the music is polished, flat black and chrome.

   This three song set is saxophone-free (a real switch for the band, which utilised the sax as a tone-setter) but does feature cello on the title track. Mudlow bassist and recording engineer Paul Pascoe's already quality sonics have been refined in those two years, and the sense of space, groove, and breath, always a Mudlow hallmark, is accentuated to the point that on headphones you'll think you're in the room. Pascoe's sense of tension and drama is put to use by Tobias Mudlow's funky, funky, country jazz punk city blues guitar, its strong, inventive plucking, crossed with a fine sense of mood really plays a great part in setting the band's sound apart. It's something that was there, but not apparent when the sax was used, often as a co-lead instrument. Matt Latcham is Mudlow's drummer. Solid, creative, and holding up the bottom while dancing across his drums with one hand in the pocket, the other on the gas. His funky foot locks in tight with the bass and guitar, and is crucial to the noir soundtrack feel of the Mudlow sound. Precise, economical, country yet funky.


   The Minnesota Snow ep is another exceptional release by a great band. It shows continued growth of depth, sonically, instrumentally, and lyrically. I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if I'm reading a collection of short stories by Tobias Mudlow at some point in the future. Whatever happens, this band will continue to evolve. It's personal blues-infected music with emotional heft, and a strong artistic vision.

   It's the music from the closing credits of your favorite movie. It's the song you listen to as you drive off the dock at the end of the chase scene, it's the song that plays as the sun rises over the weed-choked city cemetery, it's the sound you hear as you run through the concrete jungle of southern (UK) bars and clip-joints. Welcome back to Mudlow country. We've missed you.

   I understand this is to be the first in a series of digital releases, on the road to vinyl. I can't wait.

LiSTEN::





MUDLOW - The MiNNESOTA SNOW ep

webs // twit // fb // itunes // bandcamp // reverbnation // soundcloud // youtubes

Cover photo by the great Casey Weber
   Mudlow believes in the darkness, the nightshade of black and blues at twilight, and the tension of breath in the space between.

   They know the mystery of a song's mood brings about a sense of place. The song Minnesota Snow is such a song. You can feel the threat. The menace of blizzard winds. A blizzard of snow, or a tempest of violence? Or both. You're the witness.

"Let out some air from the tires, rock it back and forth, Needles on empty, heater's on full."

   That's a place nobody wants to be in, on-the-verge of lost desperation. All you can do is hope and pray you didn't really fuck it all up this time. It's an apt M.O. for most Mudlow songs. The world is gone shit side up y'all, but it ain't gonna always be that way baby, and it ain't ever gonna be without the boogie. It's nothing without that Mudlow style.

   Let's take it down to Stubb's Yard.

   This is where Mudlow drives us through their North Mississippi, their Texas, their Detroit demolition. This is high steppin', steel-toe sliding, finger tracing, hand clappin', face-slappin' downtown rock city boogie music. At 2:28 it's the shortest song of the three, but that's all it needs.

   The third joint of this set is Codename Toad.

   Something untoward is going on but hell, nothing's illegal until you get caught, right? It's a dirty rockin' thing having something to do with guns (a walnut grip Baretta by name) a mohair suit, a clear pint, plenty of cocaine, some weed and a shootout. It sounds like a breakneck, backroad trip from Peacehaven to Small Dole, down Devil's Dyke Road, to Shoreham and Saltdean. Listening to side one of ZZ Top's Tejas loud on repeat, taking that last midnight run...praying...Mr. State Trooper...

   It's a perfect example of a Mudlow song that could be the basis for a movie. Each song acts as a vignette of British crime, grime, and time. It's the Brighton breakdown of AC/DC'd dirty soul blues, hard loaded swagger, and a lot of whiskey, cigarettes and well-thumbed paperbacks.

   It's only been two years since Mudlow released their second album, Sawyer's Hope, but for some reason it seems longer to me. With each release, I get sucked into this Mudlow soundtrack for awhile, where the streets are usually wet and shining with street-lamp glare, everybody has a hard noir story, and the music is polished, flat black and chrome.

   This three song set is saxophone-free (a real switch for the band, which utilised the sax as a tone-setter) but does feature cello on the title track. Mudlow bassist and recording engineer Paul Pascoe's already quality sonics have been refined in those two years, and the sense of space, groove, and breath, always a Mudlow hallmark, is accentuated to the point that on headphones you'll think you're in the room. Pascoe's sense of tension and drama is put to use by Tobias Mudlow's funky, funky, country jazz punk city blues guitar, its strong, inventive plucking, crossed with a fine sense of mood really plays a great part in setting the band's sound apart. It's something that was there, but not apparent when the sax was used, often as a co-lead instrument. Matt Latcham is Mudlow's drummer. Solid, creative, and holding up the bottom while dancing across his drums with one hand in the pocket, the other on the gas. His funky foot locks in tight with the bass and guitar, and is crucial to the noir soundtrack feel of the Mudlow sound. Precise, economical, country yet funky.


   The Minnesota Snow ep is another exceptional release by a great band. It shows continued growth of depth, sonically, instrumentally, and lyrically. I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if I'm reading a collection of short stories by Tobias Mudlow at some point in the future. Whatever happens, this band will continue to evolve. It's personal blues-infected music with emotional heft, and a strong artistic vision.

   It's the music from the closing credits of your favorite movie. It's the song you listen to as you drive off the dock at the end of the chase scene, it's the song that plays as the sun rises over the weed-choked city cemetery, it's the sound you hear as you run through the concrete jungle of southern (UK) bars and clip-joints. Welcome back to Mudlow country. We've missed you.

   I understand this is to be the first in a series of digital releases, on the road to vinyl. I can't wait.

LiSTEN::





09 December 2014

GRAVELROAD - EL SCUERPO

fb // web // knick knack records // reverbnation // twit // AMAZON // iTunes

Wow.

 GravelRoad have grown up and moved out. They've walked on down the juke joint hall into the Mississippi gloaming, through the pines through the pines, to the center of a crop circle on the edge of a south central Washington state scrub land. They climb down a steep canyon, lit by a dusted August moon as it glides down a wide, quiet southern river. Rays of black and white moonlight glance off of the river water and on to the golden eyes...of El Scuerpo.

   While Seattle's GravelRoad always hailed spiritually from a sometimes mythical, sometimes hyper-real north Mississippi, on El Scuerpo the vibe is Spokane and Tacoma, by way of Holly Springs, Greenville, or Chulahoma. That's a good thing. It's how they started out.

   Dirty, pan-regional, they've always been brave about experimentation, and stretching their blues, and El Scuerpo is no great departure from that vision. From slow, folky, smoky grooves, to sumo-weight blasts of post-blues, to a tightened up T-Modelesque go-round, GR's boogie is unimpeachably tight, regardless of musical topography, regardless of any influencing ghosts. They're really at the top of their blues game, and it shows on El Scuerpo.

   Now in their tenth year, with the 2014 release of El Scuerpo it all comes together and they nail what they'd set out to do back in '04: Play with North Mississippi song forms and see where they lead. But this album finds them sonically where they belong. The recording is (as are the performances) outstanding. GravelRoad has always been much more than backup band for late Boss Of The Blues T-Model Ford, and if there was any doubt El Scuerpo confirms that.

   On this their fifth album (not including two albums with T-Model,) GravelRoad step out even further from what could have been a blues yoke for some bands, and into a deeper blues, an amalgam if you will of their metal, hill country blues, punk and funk roots. They, as T-Model Ford would have said, put a stamp on it.

      Walking point on the mixing board for El Scuerpo is Seattle legend of sound Jack Endino , a pairing that makes "like duh" perfect sense to me. Endino you'll recall mixed Mudhoney, Soundgarden, Tad, Nirvana, and Murder City Devils, among others. El Scuerpo was then mastered by Seattle's Rick Fisher (Steve Miller, Sammy Davis Jr.)  El Scuerpo displays the sonic care that went into producing this disc, by simply, sonically, sounding like a classic hard rock record. But it's more than that. There's elements of Zep-ness, psych-ness, CCR-ness, Afghan Whigsishness, and plenty of Seattleness, but all while sounding like the city-slickered sons of T-Model Ford that they are.

   With Endino handling the mixing, El Scuerpo shows GravelRoad's heaviness refined, without them losing an ounce of dirt. Their North Mississippi Hill Country mantle is burnished like trees along a cattle trail, and all of it is finally given the sweaty sonic cojones and sweetmeats they've deserved for years. GravelRoad have never made a better sounding record than El Scuerpo, and they've never played better than they do now. They started as dudes trying to rock the North Mississippi blues, and have become men rocking the south Seattle blues. If there is any band that you could still shake a stick at for representing that Seattle sound it'd be these guys.

   El Scuerpo brings to mind elements of Junior Kimbrough, early Joe Walsh, T-Model and RL Burnside, some Cave, a rainy downtown Seattle street an hour after the bars close, some Lanegan, Dulli, Wolf and Priest, Saturday night sunset at Grandfather Cuts Loose The Ponies wild horse monument, Johnny Cash and Freddie King, Melvins, Skynyrd, SUNN))), leaving the the winds at dawn on the beach at La Push, slipping in your favorite mix tape, cutting through the forest, and going down south. One track you hear Trower, the next Kimbrough, maybe a little Beefheart, some Neil, T-Model of course, but all of it run down that GravelRoad. What else could you want? This'll be  a great album to get you through the winter, in stony fireside listens.

   GravelRoad has made an album both powerful, and forward moving, but also fun. There'll be times listening to El Scuerpo you might find yourself muttering under your breath...fuckyeahdudes...as you bob your head to the blues rock action. It's a new old school. It's blues heavy, funky, classic rock and slankyass party music. It's smart, hot and seriously terrific.

Here's a track by track run down of El Scuerpo::


1. Waiting For Nothing ::

The jam to start your day, and end your night.
I'm 13 and riding in my brothers
Corvair, on rain-slick roads, through the deep woods
outside of Crater Lake, listening to
The Smoker You Drink, The Player You Get.

2. Wolf On Down The Way ::

A modern wolf baby or maybe a
'yote, runs the pines at night, from Cascade
to Fort Wayne, and Tullahoma, to West
Memphis, howling for souls, digging for bone.

3. 40 Miles ::
Evil audio homage to New York-Mississippi wish-fuls Twenty Miles? Respect!

4. Lord Have Mercy ::
Oh. My God. this.
This exceptional cover of Junior Kimbrough's Lord Have Mercy. Vocals are by Lisa Kekaula of the mighty, mighty, Bellrays. Fat, soulful drums of war, fat, blue, brown, tough and soulful North Mississippi chords, meet Sunday morning vocals, pleading for relief. Y'all been there.
Lord have mercy, indeed.

5. Green Grass ::
Heavy/poppy/weird...and rocking.
T-Model rocking on a train, with a '70s english Stoner Witch.

6:: DD Amin ::
I ... wait... what? ...wtf? I'm sorry, but GravelRoad just threw a thousand Melvinized-gigatons of geo-political Sabbath at me. I had to go incognito to search for the words: slide-guitar driven, Explosif Plastique. 

7. Asteroid ::
Here's where they start really hanging out with EndinoEarth hugs its grandsons, dogs bath the heads of cats with their tongues.

An El Camino rolls out after midnight, past Spangle, past Spokane, Past Stateline...Lights....OFF. The dam just ahead...

8. Flesh And Bones::
What else can I say but better than any cannibal song that Danny Elfman or some other smart-ass, could ever have imagined.

El Scuerpo is a hell of an album, folks. 
And that's for damn sure.



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