= May 2013 =  
United Bible Studies
Chrissy Zebby Tembo
Skogen Brinner
Jetman Jetteam
Nightmare Air
Paul Messis
The Baron Four
The Colorplates
Donovan's Brain
Deniz Tek



(LP from www.jellyfant.com )

Recorded live on 1st July 2008 in Providence, Rhode Island, this unique disc highlights why the musical collective known as United Bible Studies should be part of the collection of every Terrascope listener.

   Performed in the evening at Top Shelf (Tobey Street), the two part title track, that opens and closes the album, is a stunning acapella piece, that has a depth and compositional sense that is almost overwhelming. Featuring nine singers including Sharron Kraus, David Colohan, Gavin Prior and Orion Rigel Domisse, the music has a sad and sensual beauty that reminds me of Faure's Requiem, the voices blending as if conducted by a higher power, washing both time and the mundane from your mind, allowing free reign of the senses. With voices adding both rythym, harmony and dissonance, the sounds twist and curl around themselves, the whole track an ever changing and truly beautiful composition that compels you to listen.

   Between the title track are four pieces recorded at the graveside of H.P.Lovecraft, that writers huge gothic tales os cosmic terror, seeming the perfect backdrop for the sombre and haunting music created. Opening with droning strings, “Chtonic Spiral” mixes dark chamber music with ghostly folk melodies, stuttering vocal noise only adding to the atmosphere, this mood lightened with the arrival of “Tributaries of the Styx Under Providence”, a lone banjo introducing a more traditional folk tune, with a lovely vocal line and perfect harmonies, the whole thing ending far too soon, although the disappointment is quickly removed as a rippling banjo keeps time on “Swan Point Petrichor”, a haunting and gorgeous track that has an undercurrent of drone and an aching sadness at its core. Ending the graveside selection, “Grave Trudge” has droning vocals, birdsong? And footsteps on gravel, these simple elements creating a monochrome funereal dirge (in the nicest sense), another piece laden with emotion and atmospheric disturbance. Finally, the title track returns the second part as equally wonderful as the first, leaving the listener drained with the intensity of the listening experience, but strangely at peace. (Simon Lewis)



(CD from Captain Trip Records 3-17-14, Minami-Koiwa, Edogawa-Ku, Tokyo, Japan)

So let's parlez glam rock... I don't want to come on like Mr. Dogmatic here, but all the evidence seems to point towards the fact that this much maligned genre spluttered into existence with Birkenhead, Liverpool's Klubs; a psyche/r'n'b combo who developed a penchant for wearing their girlfriend's satin and tat, with only revue bar sleaze and panto land gender reversals for possible reference points. EMI studios deemed them 'unrecordable' (sounds promising!) and one unrepresentative single later, seemed to suggest a case of too little, too soon...the dolls that never were etc etc...

It only took two years for the real deal to magnify/explode the he/she template, with, naturally, a gaggle of camp followers trailing in Syl 'n' Johnny's wake. The most desperately transparent being the severely overrated Japan during their Ariola days...David Sylvian AND Mick Karn ? Please! And anyway they couldn't hold a candle to the Hollywood Brats...surely the best of that bunch? Which brings me to an interesting footnote to all this divine decadence, and that comes in the shape of Rouge; who were a Japanese five-tet from the mid-seventies who also saw the Dolls as the veritable living end of high energy rock'n'roll. Which they were. Led by Takura Abe (vocals) and guitarist Masakazu Oshiro, their debut waxing "Best of Rouge" was produced by the Sadistic Mika Band's Kazuhiko Kato and was issued on Toshiba EMI in 1975. And I believe, that is all they wrote. Though details are pretty scant, it appears that they later morphed into a stonesier aggregation called The Screw Bankers. (?) So...thirty-eight years later, it was up to the very fine Captain Trip label to dig up further evidence of their brief career with "76 Live" - a previously unreleased live recording from the Habiya Amphitheatre. And in the high energy graunch stakes, this certainly pouts the pout and (ahem) walks the walk. "No (Born to be Schools Out)" "Magic Lady" and "Star Fuck" are nice combinations of flashy chordage and a vocalist whose ragged set of pipes occasionally resort to an Iggyesque yelp or two of "Alright!!". "Rock'n'Roll Yaon", "Biku-Biku" and the 12 bar "Honky Tonk Roller Star" aren't exactly needles in the red by comparison and seem to edge towards the Dolls' "Stranded in the Jungle" r'n'b novelty genre....however, the audience blow their whistles (?) and the fan girls scream on regardless...

Sure Rouge are derivative, but they're also a glob of big, gaudy fun and when did I ever listen to you anyway?? It's a perfect disc for those still exploring the pre-punk dark ages and for those who think that, after all these years, it's now o.k. to rave over those Sweet 'b' sides...

(Steve Pescott )



(CD/LP/Download from Gringo Records

A couple of months back in these very pages I was enthusing about the current crop of, loosely speaking, newish psychedelic bands hailing from UK and specifically the area north of Spaghetti Junction. Well, one of those so tagged, Hookworms, have just gone and released a jaw droppingly good album, the evocatively titled Pearl Mystic.

An impressive live act, the Leeds five-piece, each member known by his initials, made a winning introduction to their recording career in 2011 with the self-titled EP on which this builds with aplomb. A heady distillation of Primal Scream swagger, dark Velvets underbelly with shards of Elevators and PiL thrown in (singer MJ evoking Lydon’s Metal Box lupine howls in much the same way as Gnod’s Neil Francis), comparisons with 80s psych dronemeisters Spacemen 3 and Loop are also inevitable. Yet Hookworms are much more than mere retreads or a series of hip but heard-it all reference points. An impressively seamless sonic state of affairs is no doubt helped by the old fashioned way in which the group has learnt its trade. Not for Hookworms the instant but all too often dubious celebrity of TV talent shows or the viral download acclaim accorded to acts which have never played outside of their bedrooms. These guys have paid their dues with support slots for the likes of Wooden Shjips, Peaking Lights and Sun Araw and it shows in the quality of the material and the assurance with which it is presented. The old ways are sometimes the best particularly when it leads to something as stunningly fresh and vital as this.

That’s all very well, I hear you say, but where is the evidence that he’s actually listened to any of this? Ah well if you must. “Away/Towards” gnod’s in the direction of that Manchester collective, down to the cyber-psych, the riffing and the “there’s a vocalist in there somewhere” echo drench. About half way in, Bobby Gillespie puts in an appearance – no, just checking, that’s MJ, but you get the point I hope, and the Primal Scream vibe is further emphasised by the Evil Heat-style motorik and the strut of Give Up, But Don’t Give In. For “Form and Function” read Sister Ray rewired and re-launched for an altogether different time and place, MJ’s vocals becoming ever more frantic as the pace goes from searing to molten to mental – white light/white heat and, ultimately white noise. Phew, what a scorcher as they might say. You want more? Well, try the rather creepy but utterly fulfilling acid-drone of “Since We Had Changed” and “Preservation” which manages to sound like Saucerful-era Floyd shot through with a massive dose of the screaming abdabs and administered courtesy of a custard pie of righteous indignation planted squarely in the face. “In Our Time” and “What We Talk About” returns us to Scream territory, a brace of those slow, drawling almost ballad-style tunes that Gillsepie and the boys throw in for dark relief when they want a breather. They are the most conventional tracks here but even then the electronic hums and throbs which sit below lend a rather psychotic air to proceedings. Add to that some interesting or perhaps inner-resting instrumental vignettes entitled “i”, “ii” and “iii” and you’ve got the complete package neatly bundled.

Now what are you waiting for? (Ian Fraser)



(CD on QDK Media)

QDK has been unearthing psychedelic artifacts from Zambia for a few years now and this 1974 rarity (originally released on Chris Edition) may be the best of the lot. Absolutely stoned-out fuzz pyrotechnics reminiscent of Hendrix crossed with the minimalist repetitive riffs of Velvet Underground all surrounding drummer Tembo’s chanting, reggae-style vocal delivery sets this headseering album apart from your typical garage psych “find”. Special attention must be given to Paul Ngozi’s sizzling guitar solos – he’s like a bull in a china shop set loose to explore every noise he can wrestle out of his six string… and he does so with surprising restraint – his fills are tastefully dropped in in the service of a “song” and not just random wankery. He may be one of the best guitarists you’ve never heard of… and God knows there are a lot of them running around, but this time it’s for real. His prolific career at the forefront of “Zamrock” was cut short by AIDS at the age of 41.

The songs are ultra-catchy and sung in English, unlike most Zamrock which is typically sung in the native tongue. Closer ‘He’s Gone Forever’ may be prophetic, but its weeping, wah-wah guitar licks and Tembo’s mournful, dirgy eulogistic vocals (“He’s gone forever/Buried 6 feet down/He’s gone forever/Never see him again”) form an unintentionally fitting tribute to this great musician and you owe it to yourself to investigate his magnificent work by starting right here. (Jeff Penczak)



(CD/LP on Subliminal Sounds )

The debut album from Sweden’s Skogen Brinner (roughly, “Burning Forest”) is a snarling slab of venomous sputum that’s chock full of doom-laden Sabbathian sludge, finger-bleeding Motörhead riffage, and throat-shredding vocal utterances (mostly in Swedish) that’ll frighten men, women, and children at forty paces. Mix a little Linus Pauling Quartet with Motorpsycho and sprinkle a liberal dose of Opeth and stand back and watch the fireworks. Us mere mortals don’t stand a chance when the blood starts dripping down our eardrums from headbanging festivities and nocturnal rampages through the streets strewn with the masses whose hearts and minds were too weak to withstand the full throttle assault of tracks like ‘Chock’ [‘Shock’], ‘Svarta Skuggor’ [‘Black Shadows’] or the self-explanatory ‘Speed Freak’, complete with English vocals and a slight ‘Born To Be Wild’ riff that reveals none-too-subtle Steppenwolf influences.

Other tracks like ‘Fasornas Berg’ [‘Horror Mountain’] and ‘Odjurets Hämnd’ [‘Monster’s Revenge’] are as menacingly cutthroat as their titles suggest. This is not for the faint of heart or afternoon tea parties, although ‘Vägen Till Förvirring’ [‘The Way To Confusion’] does have a stomach-settling Soundtracks of Our Lives-meets-Genesis pastoral atmosphere that alleviates the bloodletting for a welcome, albeit brief respite.

Crisp production wrests every nuance out of their bludgeoning guitar onslaught, and the bottom-heavy rhythm section adds just enough menacing swagger to keep you firmly planted up against the wall, muthafuckah. The band’s manifesto is to create “rotten hard rock with a drive and without too many frills.” I’d say they succeeded quite nicely, thank you.

(Jeff Penczak)



(CDs on Saint Marie)

Texas upstarts Saint Marie have been releasing an intriguingly eclectic mix of albums for several years now, including the latest from our old Terrastock friends, Piano Magic. One of their specialties has been a sort of cottage industry formed around the Nu-gaze phenomenon, a 21st century take on classic Shoegaze. Broaddaylight [sic] is the trio of vocalist Sarah Eakins, her electronics whiz hubbie James and their guitarist friend Henry Bennett. They’ve had the good fortune to impress former Cocteau Twin sound sculptist Robin Guthrie enough to enlist him to master all of their releases, including this, their debut full length. As expected, Cocteau Twins comparisons abound, not least from Sarah’s unintelligible Fraseresque operatic soprano (a description, not a complaint!) Dead Can Dance are also familiar touchstones as the lads’ swirling electronic washes and guitarscapes slash their way across your synapses like razors through butter.

                  Tracks like the self-expanatory ‘Arpeggio’ evince a fine appreciation of the guitar escapades of Robert Smith and vintage Cure, particularly their “suicide trilogy” of Faith, Seventeen Seconds and Pornography. But there’s also a sense of fun frolicking through the bubbly title track(s) that alleviates fears of another depressing, hide-the-razor-blades session of dark Gothic gloom. Their focus wanders a tad towards the end (the 8+ minutes of ‘Melisandre’ could use some tightening), but the perky electro pop closer ‘Warmth’ lives up to its title by wrapping things up on a high note,  like cherishing a fading sunset in the arms of a loved one.

A thumbs up from Stereolab’s Laetitia Sadier (“very beautiful”) suggests a promising debut from Seattle’s Jetman Jet Team and they deliver the goods on We Will Live In The Space Age. Straight off the mark, the instrumental title track reminds me of Ligeti’s terrifying sounds from deep space that Kubrick pasted into 2001: A Space Odyssey and then it’s off to the races with the Chapterhouse-meets-Teenage Fanclub collage of ‘Cosmic Age’. Other outer space references add an air of “concept album” to the set, from the rocket launching ending to ‘Albatross’ and the palate-cleansing wall of guitar shards of white noise (‘Sunshine Skyway’, ‘Deep Space’), to the Enoesque ambience of ‘Sungazing’, the seemingly out-of-place tender ballad ‘Sunshine Instinct’, and the return to the 2001 motiv via the soothing strains of ‘Monoloth’. And if they think titling one of their tracks ‘Terrascope’ is going to get our attention…well, they’ve succeeded. It’s a headswirling warm treacle bath with breathy vocals, phased wah-wah effects, and a pleasing Slowdive vibe that’s never a bad thing.

                  They also have a habit of ending many tracks with a swirl of ambient shellac (a soft electronic phrase, an acoustic guitar flourish, an otherworldy vocal) that softens the landing of our combustible journey through space. The Sadier nod may also have something to do with the occasional Stereolab-style krautrock flourishes via motorik headrushes like ‘Corrosive’, while Sadie’s late Stereolab partner Mary Hansen’s collaboration with Terrastock faves Hovercraft (Schema) drops in for an occasional slab of electronic noise that’s icing on this Nu-gaze cake.

The final album on offer is the debut effort of much-lauded L.A. nu-gazers, Nightmare Air. A peek at the credits offers a hint of what’s under the covers: mixed by Dave Schiffman (Nine Inch Nails, The Mars Volta, Dead Meadow) and mastered by Howie Weinberg (Nirvana and Terrastock vets, Sonic Youth). So  you know it’s gonna be unrelentingly LOUD – in fact, they’ve been tapped “LA’s loudest band” so prepare yourself for a sonic meltdown. Luckily, Swaan Miller’s vocals fall on the acceptable side of ethereal without getting cutesy, Dave Dupuis’ guitar lines are sleek and economic (thankfully, wankery is left outside the studio door) and Jimmy Lucido’s relentless skinpounding does exciting backflips and somersaults around his partner’s pyrotechnics. There’s a clean, crisp sound to these proceedings that will attract Garbage fans, but I also sense an affinity for The Heart Throbs’ melancholic, high energy pop, particularly on the eerie ’18 Days’.

                  Elsewhere, ‘Sweet Messy Riff’ may be a lazy title, but the studio tomfoolery (electronic noodling, ghostly vocal effects) breathes life into a potentially lifeless tune featuring some fine soloing from Dupuis.  ‘Sun Behind The Rocks’, however, does get lost in its own quirkiness, resorting to sound effects and extraneous noises that don’t justify its seven-and-a-half minute length, and ‘Eyes’ is little more than Miller shouting out the title, Toyah-style.  But redemption quickly arrives in the form of the riveting ‘Silver Light’, with Lucido’s motorik drumming driving Miller’s yearning vocals and Dupuis serpentining slick shards of glass into the back of your skull with wreckless abandon. Overall, an exciting debut with the promise of even better thinks to come. (Jeff Penczak)




So, who's up for some retro Garage fun, fuzzed guitars, snotty lyrics and suitably analogue production values courtesy of an in-house 8-track ? If so, you can do no worse than the rather excellent 12 track collection from Paul Messis, the tunes moving from garage snarl to Byrdsian jangle, all the while maintaining the energy, the attitude and the ear for a good tune.

   As if to emphasis the two sides of the same coin, the opening brace comprises of “I Hate the World Around Me”, a snarling rocker with a fine garage riff, followed by “A Matter of Opinion” a glorious jangle that Roger McGuinn would be proud of, the two tunes providing a fine opening salvo that is matched by the rest of the album. Sounding as authentic as an authentic thing on authentic street, “Happy This Way” is a stunner, Garage music at its best, manic, filled with energy and over all to quickly, the moodier “The Tables Have Turned” keeping things sleazy, demanding that you turn the stereo up all the way and crack open another brew.

    Slowing things down further, “Sad How a Love Fades Away” is the classic garage ballad, whilst “(Don't Wanna Be) Scene or Herd” cranks up the garage-o-meter again, a track that would sound perfectly at home on the Pebbles Box, or similar, short, sharp and sweet. In fact, this whole album plays like a classic “Lost Sixties Classics” collection, except by the same band and released in 2013, no bad thing in my mind and certainly more entertaining than most of the garbage that gets played on Radio One these days.

     Sounding like The Sonics, “Sowing Seeds” is a primitive stomp that makes you wish you had bought bigger speakers and is an album highlight for me, the poppier “It Doesn't Matter to Me” sounding a little lightweight immediately afterwards, although the catchy chorus/melody and some groovy guitar soon catch your attention, the whole collection brought to a close by “Goodbye” a song about lost love, as so many sixties songs seemed to be, at least in the Garage genre. Best enjoyed with a beer or two, this is a great collection of honest music, as it should be.

     Halfway between Beat and Garage with a UK sheen, The Baron Four will ensure the speakers continue to work hard as they rock your room with “Yes I Do”, the Kinks meeting The Third Bardo in some sleazy club, complete with a perfectly nasty guitar tone  and stomping backing. On “Girl” the band hit a slower groove without losing the heaviness, the mono production really pushing both songs out of the speakers, a fine guitar solo adding to the fun. (Simon Lewis)




As the subtitle of this comprehensive compilation states, The Colorplates were a “post-punk art rock” combo from Seattle at the turn of the decade, ca. 1979-82. The band were never captured on vinyl, so Green Monkey honcho (and Colorplate singing guitarist Tom Dyer) has collected all known recordings (or at least as many that will fit on an 80-minute CD) for this collection of previously unreleased material. As befits the era in which these recordings were made, there’s a combination of sounds at work, from power pop to punkadelic jams to strident guitar workouts – sometimes in the same song! However, the Colorplates’ legacy will always be defined by their numerous WTF moments, typically when Dyer and fellow guitarist Harvey Tawney break out their sax and clarinet and improv their way into strangulated Ornette Coleman territory – they’ve even written a song called “Ornette” in case the sleeve-wearing influences aren’t obvious enough!

Elsewhere, there’re punky renditions of golden mouldies like “My Little Red Book”, a Polkacide-inspired instrumental romp through “Help!”, a why-didn’t-I-think-of-that, sax-driven “Purple Haze”, and a joined-in-progress bastardisation of “Break On Through (To The Other Side)” that suggest the band members have a very cool “classic rock” record collection. Even their Buzzcockian, theremin-riddled blitzkrieg through “It Was A Very Good Year” takes on a poignant air considering the retrospective nature of these recordings!

Hawkwind fans will pogo the light fantastic to “Kamikaze Teardrop”, David Byrne’s herky-jerky PTSD delivery hovers throughout the angular Wire-meets-Talking Heads phenomenon that is “Camouflage” and The Beatles unmistakable guitar jangle is all over “Running Your Heart Away” (I’ll leave it to you to identify where they copped the opening riff from).

It’s all good-natured fun played with the reckless abandon of The Stooges in a china shop, equally inspired (in the band’s own words) by, among others, The Dave Clark Five and Ornette Coleman. The final four tracks are improvisational jams that are completely disconnected from the fratboy mentality that preceded them and feature a collection of percussives, wooden flutes, music boxes, Jack-in-the-boxes(!), toy instruments, and the oddly-tuned sax and clarinet that incredibly presage the more experimental oeuvre of Kemialliset Ystävät, The Magic Carpathians, Tower Recordings, Jackie-O Motherfucker and other like-minded musical mavericks beating to the sound of their own marching drums. In fact, I would have preferred if Dyer titled the collection after the final (live) track, “Drunk Munchkin Marching Band.” Now there’s a self-referential appellation that perfectly encapsulates the glorious wonders that lie within!

So, if you weren’t there to experience their live debaucheries, this nostalgic artefact recreates all the fun – just add a few Jäger-spiked 40 ouncers, sprinkle liberally with sweat and body odor and boogie-oogie-oogie the night away!

(Jeff Penczak)



(CD and LP on Career )

Ron Sanchez’ gathering at God’s Little Ear Acre in Bozeman, Montana of his ever-evolving tribe of pot-headed pixies and mushroomed musicologists swells to nearly a dozen on this, Donovan’s Brain’s seventh full-length release. Not exactly prolific (they’ve been together in one form or another for over 20 years), the band strikes when the musical iron is hot, as fresh ideas swell from exciting studio wrap parties following each of their infrequent salvos. This time around, the core trio of Sanchez, Bobby Sutliff, and ex-Atomic Rooster drummer Ric Parnell are joined by Rain Parader Matt Piucci, Radio Birdman’s Deniz Tek, Colter Langan, bassist Bob Brown, and assorted friends. Sutliff was involved in a near-fatal car accident that left him in a coma for six weeks, during which vocalist Tony Miller and guitarist Scott Sutherland were deputised to fill Sutliff’s shoes and they’ve done an admirable job on tracks like the ruminative ‘Small Circles’ and ‘Cardboard Army’. Sutherland’s solo on ‘Manager of Time’ is particularly tasty.

                  Multi-instrumentalist Sutliff is the focal point on opener “Take Me With You When You Go’, lending guitars, bass and organ to the poppy psychedelia that welcomes the intrepid explorer on what Sanchez calls “a psychedelic storybook taking you on a journey to a landscape where birds dream and men fly.” Sanchez’ mellotron, harpsichord, and organ add a playful backdrop to ‘As The Crows Fly’, although the song’s rather abrupt fade imbues it with an awkward air of incompleteness. ‘My Own Skin’ is a successful journey into dreamy psychedelia reminiscent of Green Pajamas and Dipsomaniacs, with Sanchez’ synth swashes bathing the listener in a golden glow and Sutliff and Tek are in fine form trading guitar solos on the radio-friendly, Tom Pettyesque ‘Restless Night, Many Dreams’ and the similarly-themed ‘Morning Side Dream’ continues the concept of floating across soft meadows on the wings of butterflies – and it includes an awesome Sutliff solo to boot!

                  Considering the guests recorded their parts at five different studios, kudos also go out to Sanchez and Sutliff’s mixing and production duties behind the desk for seamlessly weaving the proceedings into a cohesive collection that is the first in a series of upcoming releases that will only bolster an already impressive catalogue.

NOTE: The vinyl edition has a bonus track and longer, sometimes radically different versions of the songs, so you might want to consider adding it to your collection.

(Jeff Penczak)



(CD and LP on Career )

Legendary Radio Birdman founding guitarist Tek has graced the music industry with his bluesy rock and roll swagger for nearly 40 years, yet in spite of a hefty back catalogue, this is only his second solo album, a mere two decades on from his Take It To The Vertical debut. This love letter to the titular town (about an hour from his birthplace of Ann Arbor) bears the gritty signature of the roll call of local heroes that have put Detroit near the top of the rock and roll map. As expected, there are Iggy, Stooges, MC5, Ted Nugent, et. al. signposts along the way as Tek captures the dire atmosphere of this proud town with an indelible musical legacy. Tracks like ‘Pine Box’, ‘Ghost Town’, and ‘Growing Dim’ all testify to the fact that this town has seen better days, yet it’s a testament to resiliency of its inhabitants that they will not let it be destroyed by lesser elements of society.

                  ‘Pine Box’ shoots out of the gate with a roll call of the city’s miseries: crack smokers, empty factories, broken windows; a place where death truly shows no mercy. This is all presented with a typically snotty delivery reminiscent of punk antiheroes, The Dead Boys. [Yeah, I know they’re from Cleveland, but the bleak landscape of America’s Midwest is comparable and Cleveland’s garage legacy is not that far removed from Detroit’s headbangers’.] ‘Can of Soup’ is an early highlight – another litany of life’s daily miseries hung on a driving beat propelled by drummer Ric Parnell (ex-Atomic Rooster) and a fuzzy guitar solo from Tek.

                  The album’s relentless gloom ‘n’ doom ambience continues on the dirgy late night blues of ‘Growing Dim’, another tears-in-your-beers pity party, while ‘Ghost Town’ reeks of pain, misery, and death – “We’re already dead/Nothing can kill us anymore”. The big automobile manufacturers have all seen better days (“Goodbye Jimmy [Hoffa], Mopar, and Henry Ford/We don’t build cars there anymore”), tanks roam the streets, and life is hopelessly meaningless. Daddy Long Legs adds a moaning blues harp that drives the point home – it can’t get any worse than this.

                  The album is economically arranged and produced – most tracks feature the Deniz Tek trio (Tek, Parnell and bassists Andy Newman/Bob Brown from Tek’s Soul Movers side project) wrestling a big phat sound from a modicum of instruments. ‘Perfect World’ is a triumphant arena-rock blast of fresh air amid the gloomy surroundings, building to an explosive, fist-pumping finale; ‘Falling’ is more bluesy swamp grit with a bleeding Tek solo, and the CD-only ‘Let Him Pay For That’ reflect Tek & Co.’s appreciative nod to the Stones’ funky, chunky Taylor-era. The CD edition ends with a final rousing statement of triumph in the eyes of the pitiful torture that Detroit has endured, ‘I’m Alright’. Daddy Long Legs’ wailing blues harp is a shout of victory, whereas before it was a funereal death knell. Ultimately, the album’s message is simple – throw whatever shit you want at us; we can take and we will survive – bloody and battered, but never beaten.

NOTE: The CD contains the stereo mix, so audiophiles may want to score the vinyl edition, as it was mixed in glorious mono at Houston’s famous analog Sugarhill Studio.

(Jeff Penczak)