Mar 25, 2007

Blues Control - Riverboat Styx cassette 2006

Old. I'm old. This is old and severely OOP, considering it comes from Fuck It Tapes and literally everything they've released is already gone. May as well eat the facts: Fusetron or a dude in aviators and a t-shirt with sloppy bird drawings on it mightcould hook you up. I say the former; the latter sounds unctous.
Anyhow, apparently someone doppled 1972 Dusseldorf into NYC's hip neighborhoods, because I'd swear these guys bunk with German Oak. Okay, maybe not at Luftschutzbunker, but you know, wherever they lay their heads for real. That's no complaint, I'll tell you what. It takes a skilled mind to get down in truly kraut terms, not just dress up your fussy haircut with the bang and clang of sweaty 70s Germans so youths can ooh + aah at what they fantasize to be your record collection (and what you're packin' in those 501s). These folk Blues Control? They don't look so fussy and barely have haircuts! (That one dude really likes hats.) So, I'm at ease, as you should be. That is, until you pop this in and dig on the spooky, murky uncoilings. Hey, c-60s can make stuff sound murky all on their own, but these two went ahead and doubled the murk factor. Who knew and hoo dang. I mean, really. And yeah, they planted their roots in krautrock, but this is it's own thing--one of the first times a new band has made me feel that in a spell. It's personal, but somehow bigger than itself.
"Rolling Fog Blues" is the obvious jam of choice, standing in one place until it's ready to stand in another, but both it and the title track do not tip their hand. I never felt ready for the change a-comin', but when it arrived, it felt right and clear like a good sound should. Dude's even got harmonica chops! Gettin' all quickly-modulated like blues on a madly-cranked Victrola. When was the last time you heard someone brag about THAT in Kim's? Shit, I wouldn't be surprised if they recorded that with one toe in the Chattahoochee, drifting with portably-powered four tracks in a burlap sack. This might also be the first time a Roland electric piano sounded like a real instrument. Don't you find they're in what you hear while perusing through cookware at a Goodwill? I don't have a clue what they did to pull that off, but I hope they keep doing it. Maybe this will be the year of the electric piano, rather than the comeback year for 80s New Wave saxophones, like I loudly anticipated in December. Oh, c'mon. You're sooo making plans for Nigel.
They've got a new one on Woodsist (FIT related) called Puff which I've heard bits and pieces of and sounds just as singular and committed as this here tape.

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