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Album Reviews

By Fursee ‘O’ Veebee

Tornado Bait Teacup’s Half Full

Unfortunately due to a printing SNAFU this review did not come out correctly in the printed version so I felt the need to reprint it in it’s entirety because it is such a great CD. All I can say is go out and get this CD right now. I really did not know how much I needed this in my life until I heard it. It reminds me of Femmes and Milkmen at times, maybe some Butthole Surfers too, but with Chrissy Hynde singing. Except Chrissy just did some whippets. Or inhaled helium. Lead singer Msesippi McQuown (editors note, that is proper spelling)dons a paper bag on her head on the cover as do many of her adoring fans at the live performances. We have a drummer who plays a suitcase, a Tiedye Cowboy who plays banjo, and a Momma who plays the Rainstick. “Let Me Be” is a great cut. “Woah To The Man” is another solid jam, as she says this town ain’t big enough for two of us, with some gravelly vocals and I swear I hear a kazoo. There is a lot going on in this CD and it comes together perfectly. “Don’t You Call Me Baby” is Msesippi’s take on a romantic slow jam, banjo style, and you can feel her emotions transcending the song and reaching deep into your soul. “Cheesus Crust” is another knee-slapper that gives me visions of Gibby and some pizza toppings and then here comes the kazoo again. I love every second of this release, as it showcases a great group of musicians that complement each other like a well-oiled piece of machinery. I really don’t know how I lived my life up to this point without this golden nugget of goodness. “Thunder” is another great jam with great harmony and guitar with a nice snare drum beat (or is that a suitcase?). If you buy any CD this year, this should be it.

The Duke Robillard Band Ear Worms

Judi Smyth of True North Records dropped the new Duke on me and this baby does not disappoint. Michael John “Duke” Robillard needs no introduction in Blues circles as his reputation precedes him world-wide. He founded the band Roomful of Blues and was a member of the Fabulous Thunderbirds. Duke also won the prestigious “Acoustic Blues Album of the Year” in 2016. Robillard plays rock, blues, jazz and swing guitar and tears it up. Not that he needs any help, but he is accompanied on this new CD by some great musicians including Chris Cote, Sunny Crownover, Mark Cutler, Julie Grant, Dave Howard, and Klem Klimek as well as his own band. This release features a wide variety of styles and sounds, as The Duke recreates many classics that I am sure you are familiar with. Duke states that the inspiration for this CD was the “late ‘50s/early‘60s, when AM radio was still the way you heard music on the airwaves”. Memorable tracks include Soldier of Love (Cason/Moon), Lonesome Hobo (Dylan), You Belong to Me (Price/ Stewart/King), Yes We Can (Toussaint), Yellow Moon (Neville), and the Link Ray classic Rawhide sure to make ole Kelly Miltier put down his PBR and start dancing! Run out and get Ear Worms before the fish start biting. You won’t be sorry! Available May 17,

Manx & Marriner Mainline Hell Bound For Heaven

Another great release from Stony Plain recording artists Harry Manx and Steve Marriner (with Harry’s pal Bina), Hell Bound For Heaven is some good ole Hard Drivin’ Blues with great guitar and gravely vocals, just the way you like. Add in that nice harp, or what my Momma used to call the Mouth Organ, and you got a sound that’s throwin’ down! Manx and Marriner wrote most of the songs on this CD and these guys really have a good thing going. Starting off with “Nothing”, the opening track on this CD is anything but, as it is right out of the Blues Textbook. Manx has a very original approach to the guitar described as “Mysticssippi” as he blends his training in Hindustani and Traditional Indian Folk guitar with good old-fashioned Blues. Marriner on the other hand, is skilled in vocals, harp, guitar, piano, Hammond organ, upright bass and electric bass. You may have heard of his band MonkeyJunk in the past. You’ve heard me say this before but I REALLY LOVE THIS CD! By the time the 3rd track started I realized that this was going to be one of my new favorite CDs. Unfortunately my car is totaled and Progressive is giving ME the Blues, so I can’t drive around with this in my car CD player for 3 weeks straight but if I could I would! So don’t crash the party, go get the CD. And join the Blues Foundation while you are at it at

Unknown Unknown Brutal Metal Gods do it once again with their self-titled EP “Unknown” as they thrash through a world of crappy music with their new release. Riveting vocals sear your cranium with goodness and the bass and lead guitar synchronize in metal mayhem. Delicious drums back it all up as combined they produce one of the greatest metal EPs in ages. In “Pestilent Effect” they slay you with all that is metal in this great speedcore jam sure to have you smashing shoulders with whoever is in the car with you as you drive down screamo highway, my favorite boulevard. “Serpents Lullaby” is a nice little ditty not fit for Dragon Trainers and a tad slower than the rest. Its soothing vocals make you yearn for unicorns and puppies, as long as you hold the bloody axe of annihilation. “Self-Inflicted” starts out with some weird noises, which I always like, then goes into the creepy distorted guitar and right into a well-mixed jam. More controlled chaos from lead singer Steve M., backed by Kevin W. on guitar, Chris G. on bass, and Mike D. on drums. Another beautiful metal anthem by some very talented musicians who meld together like alloy. Proving that steel sharpens steel, they build off of one another and continue to grow with each performance. The song ends with some more weird noises which I really appreciate. “Vicious” winds out the quartet of songs on this already epic must-have EP with a 6 ½ minute diatribe into all that is beautiful about the soothing genre of modern metal. I see metal different than most, when I am really pissed off, a good screamo calms me down and settles my nerves. Consider UNKNOWN better than any psychiatrist, and go buy it now.

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