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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

The Jackson County Kills

Honky Tonk Beast

(Belt Drive Record Club)



To feel in your heart and guts Country this Real -- a music raised up by home-folks and against whose strains, tales of the cold hard facts of life are spun in unassuming candor -- it is necessary to have done some living. To have struggled your way through hardships and loves both agonizing and salvatory. Only then, as steel-guitar swayings and booted six-strings are befriended by dogged rhythms and drawls of common aspect, will you appreciate how magnificent Country can be when market subservience is kept outside the door.

Recommended: "Man Riding a Train," "Drinking To Remember," "Love's Lost Quarter," "Operator (That's Not the Way It Feels)," "Bright Side Of the Veil," "Red Gravel Road," "Can't Smoke 'em Anymore"

Video: "Bright Side Of the Veil" (live)


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Bee Dee Kay & the U.F.O.ZZZ

"You Move Me Baby" b/w "Wake Up Honey!"   

(Soundflat Records)



Trash-Rock shaman Bee Dee Kay ditched the same square-school as Mack Stevens, Lux Interior, and pioneer Hasil Adkins. Jerking spasmodically, his gesticulations erratic, the crazed-eyed summoner of spirits that circled vintage jukeboxes and JFK-era garage rave-ups looses an avalanche of hiccups and whoops that bespeak edge of precipice. His offbeat spectacle is powered mightily by cohorts whose crash-bang rampagings indicate shared fever.

Recommended: "You Move Me Baby," "Wake Up Honey!"

Video (live, non-single)


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Rey Kalavera

"Gato Loco"   single

(Salvador Lisjuan)



While some other singles waxed by the combo at hand offered reserved musings, "Gato Loco" finds the men opening wide the throttle and racing unstoppably with twin-pipes snarling. All players hustle. The counterproductive weight possible in over-instrumentation was wisely kept off. Its absence enables sleekness to burn rubber in land-speed liberty. 

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Jordans Drive

"Big Black Betty" single

(Self-issued)



In which bright and frisky horns collude with rugged Rockabilly impetus, crafting finger-popping jive to which seas of pomps and ponytails whirl. Slapped double-bass, guitar sweeps, and snapped snare complement vocal insistence (including shouted group choruses) that compel surrender. No one resists.

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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Brian Bell

"Tourist Seventeen" 717

(Self-issued)



Some who heft guitars ravage them until blood spurts, and their exertions elate. But Brian selects a dissimilar course. With the fingers of an assiduous jewel-cutter, he rings notes impactful for their understatement. Melody issues in graceful arcs. Elegant formidibility towers.

Artist Brian is enigmatic. He maintains no online presence other than on Bandcamp. Musical acquaintanceship, then, is the sole option available.


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Eastside Suicides

Streets Got Your Baby

(Desolate Sounds)



E
cstatic-at-its-own-lifeforce Rock'n'Roll that explodes from the dancefloor's middle with ear-ripping loudness and six-string slashings in the frenzied technicolor spirit of Johnny T. Raucous onrush of this barely controlled caliber provoked Detroit's blue-jeaned Iguauna to floor convulsions. Upon its maiden rack-occupancy some 20 years ago, the Eastside Suicides' debut LP was hailed by scribes including at New York's Village Voice. Crisp reissue features four previously unavailable testaments to the group's salvatory merit in a mortal coil-circumstance too frequently dismal. Nothing rabble-rouses like The Beat.

Recommended: "Panic In My Pants," "How Much For Nothin'," "Pink Personality," "Tell Me...I Gotta Know," "Booker T. Projects," "Eastside Suicide," "Bad News," "Don't Kiss Me...I'll Kiss You," "Center Of Destruction," "Black Leather Boots," "Tear Me Apart," "Justa Lookin'," "All Dressed Up," "Streets Got Yo Baby"

Video: "All Dressed Up"


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The Defiant Ones

A Sewer Full Of Phonies

(Crazy Love Records)



In furious, bare-boned bursts, these mongers of speed-bomb Neo-Rockabilly barrel lopsidedly into upper reaches. Careening instrumental proficiency proves a powerhouse, sparking helter-skelter spiral. Tilted crown is fashioned by vocals whose dizzying whoops, subterranean plunges, and general histrionics indicate teachings absorbed at the hallowed University Of Lux.

Recommended: "Sewer Full Of Phonies," "Rosemary and Sweet Whiskey," "Melancholy," "I Like the Wild Stuff," "The Cassanova In Me," "Juice Box Baby!," "Get Here Quick," "Hello Agoraphobia," "Johnny"

Video: "Juice Box Baby!"


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FORMER staff writer for Rockabilly and Pin Up America magazines. FREELANCE credits include Daily Caller, American Thinker, Free Republic, Huffington Post, Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Independent Political Report, USA Today, Des Moines Register, Iowa City Press-Citizen, Waterloo Courier, Cedar Falls Times, Marshalltown Times Republican, Cincinnati.com, IndyStar, Arizona Republic, No Depression, Goldmine, Blue Suede News, Rock and Rap Confidential, Crackerjack, Blues News, Wrecking Pit, Punk Globe, Prairie Sun, Music and Sound Output, BAM, New Music, and 1980s NYC fanzines Shake, Rattle, and Roll, Rebel Rouser, and Off the Wall. AUTHOR: Shake, Rattle and Rocket!, Ghost Saucers in the Sky!, Stratosphere Boogieman!, Flesh Made Music, That a Man Can Again Stand Up: American spirit vs, sedition during the incipient Trump Revolution, and Ideas Afoot: Political observations, social commentary, and media analyses. WORKED as 2004 Iowa coordinator for Ralph Nader independent presidential campaign; co-founded Iowa Green Party, also served as statewide media coordinator; press coordinator, 2002 Jay Robinson (Green) IA gubernatorial effort. Wrote extensively re Trump campaign..