Swamp Music Players
A Modern Guide to All That Is Great About Alt. Country Music.
I’m not altogether sure who the Swamp Music Players actually are; the list of American and Canadian collaborators is very nearly endless; yet I got my copy from the legendary Wily Bo Walker from London Town who is involved here somewhere.
Perhaps its a good thing that I don’t get bogged down in individual musicians as this is very much a ‘band effort’ if such a thing still exists.
The album opens with the wonderfully titled Softail to Sturgis; an acoustic flavoured slice of classic Americana, that couples (River period) Springsteen with somebody like Sturgill Simpson to create a cool and atmospheric ‘road tale’ love story that will tug at your heartstrings.
Two songs later some of the dirtiest guitars I’ve heard in years threaten the peace at the start of Return of the 1%er . Think Wild One meets Easy Rider via the Stray Cats on roofies and you will still only halfway to knowing how good this song sounds.
My mate Wily Bo is the featured singer on the dark and scary Devil’s Toothpick; which sounds uncannily like a Gene Vincent 78 played at 33rpm; with Tom Waits providing harmonies….seriously weird; but great fun at the same time.
No two songs are the same; not even similar if the truth be told; but for once that’s the strength of Timeless Cool, with out and out Rockers like Poison Heart rubbing shoulders with some kind of Swamp/Funk melange (Peggy 18) via straight up Country Rockers Sweet Hitch Hiker and my personal favourite here (sorry Wily!) the finger poppin’ Voodoo of Happy Tribe.
Then, just when you think things couldn’t get any weirder; track five Street Sweeper Blues and the final track are Beat Poet/ Radio-Noir story; with the latter being by Jason Murphy, taken from the ‘Hacking The System’ TV Series; and not a million miles away from an album David Olney released a few years ago called Rise of the Hell Knights, which is something I would sit glued to the radio for if it was a Saturday night series.
Timeless Cool, is different and certainly won’t appeal to the ‘average’ music fan; but if you are still reading this review you aren’t ‘average’ are you? You are a 1%er like me who wants something that isn’t going to be heard on network TV or Radio…….this is for you; from me and the Swamp Music Players.