Graham Reid | | <1 min read
Those with passion for edgy alt.country
and Neil Young in vinegary acoustic-rock mode need only know Chris
Eckman (the Walkabouts, the innovative Sahara blues-influenced band
Dirt Music) is one of those behind this occasionally churning,
electro-rock outing with musicians from Slovenia where he now lives.
The other prime mover is Rupert Huber (of the European downbeat
electronica outfit Tosca) who feels a similar sense of displacement.
With a chorus of women offering the
spooky backdrop behind the keening and sharp guitar on Land of the
Lost, groove-riding instrumentals which deliver a sense of unease
(Longitude Zero has distant ululations and sinuous Vocoder)
and titles like Wrong Train Comin' (a whispery, poetic spoken
piece like Nancy'n'Lee in the desert before dawn) and Shame This
Darkness, this one by a musical odd couple suggests emotional
dislocation, restless spirits, the shadow of death and departures.
Doubtless Hubert brought the downbeat, electronic layerings to give this coherence, but throughout are alt.country narratives (Run of Days is chilling, Shame This Darkness offers the evocative “I'm not the triggerman, I'm not the bagman, I'm just the janitor who comes in on weekends”) and this is like a gloomy mine where your eyes adjust to identify narrow veins of dirt-covered gold.
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