I’ve been silent for the past couple of days as I transitioned from the hurley burley of Bangkok to the ludicrously laid-back vibe of the island of Koh Samui.
This bass-heavy work from Calvin Johnson alas does not get much airtime. It is a little more layered and funky than necessary for these environs. I suspect it would have worked much better in the visual smorgasboard and mash up of the nation’s capital.
The approach on this album is rare (at least for my collection). Guitars are set up almost in opposition to basslines, with the latter given much more ammunition. Johnson then piles on some pretty much spoken word vocals. It is a little like Beck’s early work, but with none of the folk pretences.
Sometimes this patchworking comes together brilliantly. The title track here (with some saucy female vocals) is a treat. Most of the tracks are very listenable and not too jarring. Occasionally the din outweighs the groove.
I suspect this album was loads of fun to make, and that it would work better live.
File under: Not hammock music…