City Slang: Music review roundup
Send CDs, vinyl, cassettes, demos and 8-tracks to Brett Callwood, Metro Times, 1200 Woodward Heights, Ferndale MI 48220. Email MP3s and streaming links to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Flutter & Wow’s Urban Prairie album has been a long time coming. The husband and wife paring of Tasha and Brian were featured in the MT back in November 2011 following the release of a stunning debut EP. Over two years later, and the full-lengther is finally getting released, and it’s been well worth the wait. The rest of the band has shifted a little in that time, but the Lords know how to pick a musician, and the performances on here are exemplary. The vocal interplay between the Lords allows for some really dynamic moments; Tasha has a gentle croon while Brian has a classic Americana voice. Think Merle Haggard and Alison Krauss, and you’re close.
Singer-songwriter Chris Emmerson is a Grosse Pointe Park-based multi-instrumentalist, and It’s So Easy From Far Away is packed with ten tunes that showcase his light-but-likable voice and actually very impressive musical ability. “The Life I Live” is a bit of an odd choice for an opener, despite the pleasant piano intro; the song never really takes off. “Pass Away,” while still a slowy, is better, building and building to a satisfying yet understated chorus. The covers of Radiohead’s “Nude” and the Beatles’ “While My Guitar Gently Weep” are ok, really just serving to express Emmerson’s influences. At times, he comes across as a little desperate. We get it – you feel things. But there’s a lot of promise here.
Margaret Doll Rod is, of course, the former rock ’n’ roll chanteuse with the Demolition Doll Rods, and she has a new 7” four-track EP out on HeeBity JeeBity Records. It’s fucking awesome too; side A’s “Desperate Friend is a duet with Asia (daughter of Dario) Argento and it’s a sexed up raucous rocker – “Frank and Nancy, but in crotchless panties,” as it says on the press release. “Kiss Me On My Body” is a slower song that allows Margaret to musically writhe around with unrestrained glee. A killer record.
Axe Ripper has put out a slit 7” with Twin Cities thrashers LockGnar. Both bands put in stellar performances too, and it’s tough to pick a winner. Rather, play both sides and allow your ears to melt away. Both bands play old school thrash, no frills but plenty of fun. Plus, the back cover image of Bush Jr. doing coke with Obama and the devil is awesome.
We saw Moon Walks recently at the Magic Stick, opening up for La Voyage, and they were handing out free 7” singles, Even the Moons Have Moons, complete with a hand-drawn cover. Much like the performance that night, the two songs on here (“Pallet Knife” and “All”) are spacey, Doors-influenced slabs of garage-tinged psychedelic rock. Not the finished article yet, but they’re young, there’s time, and there’s still much to enjoy here.