Innocent Victims & Evil Companions
Forty Below Records
Austin Singer-Songwriter Leaps Out of the Shadows With Ninth Album.
I have a friend who can not only recall virtually every songwriter of every song on every album in his extensive record collection; and another who likes to play ‘Top Trumps’ with little known songwriters of huge hit records; much to my embarrassment and annoyance.
Bill Carter will be one of those guys; as his name meant nothing to me yet he wrote hits for the Fabulous Thunderbirds, Stevie Ray Vaughan and even Robert Palmer and Waylon Jennings; so it was with more than a little bit of interest that I put the disc into the player.
Hells Bells! Bill Carter can not only write a cracking song; but on opening track Black Lion, he can sing one too. There’s a slight ‘world weariness’ to his rich and distinctive voice as he pours his heart out in a most eloquent fashion.
Oddly enough no two songs sound the same; yet the album is never ‘stop-start’ and sounds like a complete ‘work.’
Even if I hadn’t been won over with the first song; track #2 Recipe For Disaster has absolutely everything I love about Rootsy/Americana but with an added punch, as he name-checks several 60’s icons and the hope they gave us; only to let us down.
If you listen to my Rocking Magpie Podcast, you will have already heard Bughouse in Pasadena; a jaunty Vox driven story about life on the road for an itinerant musician. The copious details Carter slides into this song puts even Tom Waits to shame; and the quirky beat has had me ‘chair dancing’ every time I hear it.
The Vox and a Fender Rhodes take battle with feedback drenched guitar on the quirky talking Blues of Solar Powered Radio; and it’s so close to being left of centre it should come with sign post.
How can Bill Carter release 8 previous albums and I’ve never heard of him? This especially pains me with songs like Feel Town and the edgy Moscow Girl which manages to out Alt. anything that I’ve ever heard on Bloodshot Records; and I’ve heard a lot.
I implore you to buy this album; it may even change your life if you too have never heard of Bill Carter; but if you’re still not convinced listen to Exiled or the slow and burning Blues of No More Running, which closes the album.
Bill Carter writes and performs grown up music for grown ups like you and me; don’t miss out….find and buy this album today.
Released February 2016