taking a listen
reviews of local & state music CDs
The Tremors — Demon Boogie Fever
With a heavy dose of reverb and an affinity for schmaltzy greaser and trailer-punk folklore, the Tremors (www.myspace.com/thetremors) newest release Demon Boogie Fever is about as true to form as one could hope from a nuts-and-bolts rockabilly cut. Singer and guitarist Jimmy Tremor’s excitable yelps skip and dance over the bluesy walks of bassist Slim Perkins and drummer Stretch Armstrong’s rattling side-stick, while he peppers the melodies with his own double stops and jazzy hybrid picking. Tremor’s songwriting leans slightly away from the comic-bookish themes at the center of previous releases, save for the album’s title track, and sometimes poke fun at antiquated gender role concepts, like the “Blue Moon Woman” who “never gave a damn/ she never even learned to cook a country ham.” There’s a healthy mix of solid originals (“Sweet Lovin’ Man”) and wellchosen covers (the Cramps’ “Rockin Bones”), but with all of 13 tracks on the album, it may seem like an afternoon’s worth of bolo-tied bopping. At an average of less than two minutes per track, however, the entire album runs at a mere 25 minutes and seems to blow by in a heartbeat. The spin on that is, it simply allow for quicker absorption and retention of many of the unexpectedly catchy tracks.66/100
Yim Yames — Tribute To
He didn’t take on the most clever nor the most masking of solo pseudonyms, but hand it to My Morning Jacket’s Jim James for having a sense of humor in his selection. Under the alter-ego Yim Yames (www. myspace.com/yimyames), he’s honored the memory of the late, great Beatle George Harrison with the six-song solo release Tribute To. If the EP sounds immediately like James is cutting through the indie pretension of Evil Urges for a return to the lonesome country crooning of It Still Moves, keep in mind that these songs were recorded in 2001, just days after Harrison’s passing. They came before James’ face was visible through his mop of scraggly hair and even longer before he started wearing shoes and possessed that same rough-hewn, yet beautifully melodic sensibility that made At Dawn and It Still Moves James’ unshakably finest works. The differences that James made in Harrison staples like “Behind That Locked Door” and “Love You To” are oh-so subtle, yet endlessly pleasing. With banjitar in hand, James echoes and resonates his way through the religious complexity of “Long, Long, Long,” one of the Beatles’ most criminally underrated songs, and the endearing “My Sweet Lord.” Whether or not the impetus for such heartfelt tribute still resides within the new-and-improved Jim James, or Yim Yames, Tribute To arrives just in time to remind the My Morning Jacket fans of yesterday why they are so in the first place. 78/100
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