|Lafarge, Pokey / Something In The Water|
|Add Date:||2015-05-01|| ||Pull Date:||2015-07-03|| |
|Week Ending:||5 Jul||28 Jun||21 Jun||14 Jun||7 Jun||31 May||24 May||17 May|
How is Pokey LaFarge possible? A modern-day Leon Redbone, insofar as he incorporates the whole of early 20th century popular music into a modernized (but still out-of-time) approach. Pokey LaFarge, of St Louis, seems an impossible character-- riverboat hustler, yodeling hillbilly, yelping hustler, and more. Early (rough-edged, crazy) jazz, ragtime, Western Swing, boogie-woogie-- all these musics combined together in a beautiful stew, presided with the piercing, precise, fluent welp of Pokey's vocals.|
FCC clean. Play anything (with exception of #5, which lacks the nostalgic mastery of the others).
1 (3:23) ****** Atmospheric, spooky tin-pan alley, with shades of Stephen Foster-- minstrel-y bg harmonic group. Slick guitar solo-- a really special song.
2 (2:48) ***** Wonderfully pinched '20s cornet, lovely spirited novelty blues with barrelhouse piano, sweeping boasting vox. Wonderful unhinged saloon music.
3 (3:27) **** Heavy tribal drums, banjo and brass group-- sounds deeply like the '20s "race music" as done by the Squirrel Nut Zippers. Fun track.
4 (3:43) ***** Puts to mind the sessions Elvis did late at night, just him with his guitar and the Jordanaires-- wonderful expression in the slick (yes, Elvis-y) vocals, and the spareness of the arrangement is lovely, lovely.
5 (3:59) Straight-ahead folk-country (a la Old Crow Medicine Show); less loopy and original than the rest of the album (and a bit overproduced and treacly).
6 (3:22) **** Bouncey riverboat blues with harmonica, a bit of extra 78 shellack in Pokey's voice. High-speed, fun, with a nice harmonica break.
7 (2:52) **** Yes, some wonderful Western Blues emceeing, Bob Wills calls to his soloists-- cornet, trombone, banjo. Elegantly professional take of the Tampa Red composition.
8 (4:42) ****** Beautiful '20s Spaniard-tinted tin pan alley pastiche-- castanets, American-tinted mariachi... beautiful melody with swaying "la-di-da-di-da"s, atmospheric and haunted.
9 (3:13) ***** Slow, sad and sweet guitar (reminiscent of Mississippi John Hurt), with full-out broken-hearted country blues vocals. Small, cozy arrangement-- backing harmony group is subtle and so sorrowful.
10 (2:52) *** Sunshiney r&b (reminiscent of slick '50s soul-pop groups)
11 (3:09) **** More Western Swing influenced-- steel guitar and banjo strumming. As a take on the genre, just so frickin' perfectly executed.
12 (3:10) ***** Rampaging ragtime winner, with whiskey-scented jazz group just frickin' swingin it--